574 years of South African wine icons under the hammer with Strauss & Co
Multiple records were smashed on the 14 September Strauss & Co Virtual Live Auction that featured 5 iconic single bottle lots of South African wines as part of the combined art and wine Impression / Expression catalogue. The marquee lot and expectedly the star of the sale, a bottle of Grand Constance 1821 fetched a staggering R967,300 including commission, doubling an earlier auction record in April this year. This extremely rare bottle of sweet wine, likely destined for Napoleon before his death in 1821, is in fine condition and was of owned by the Malan family.
Notably all 5 wines sold are in fine and drinkable condition, having all been tasted recently with high acclaim by local and international critics. The age of the 5 wines collectively add up to 574 years, which captured the imagination of bidders with their incredible history, provenance and rare collectability.
The coveted 1957 vintage of South Africa’s oldest red wine – Chateau Libertas and the iconic GS Cabernet Sauvignon 1966 both achieved R91,040. The former, a 100 pointer from Greg Sherwood MW, and the latter 20/20 from Jancis Robison are record prices for red South African wines. Both bottles have recently been re-corked, ensuring perfect condition and longevity.
The night belonged to the sweets though, firmly establishing South Africa’s status as a producer of world-class sweet wines, both historically and today. The first commercial vintage of the Klein Constantia Vin de Constance 1987 achieved R34,140, while a 275ml bottle of the Jaubert Family Muscat d’Alexandrie, drawn from a 115L barrel in care of the Joubert family for more than 200 years and seven generations, fetched R91,040.
“South Africa was firmly in the company of the fine wines of the world tonight at the Strauss & Co Virtual live sale,” says wine auction partner Higgo Jacobs. “We are incredibly happy with the results, both for the sellers but also for South African wine in general. These positive results will go a long way to elevate the status of iconic, historic South African wine.”
The Strauss & Co fine wine auctions are a collaboration between Strauss & Co, SA’s leading fine wine merchant WineCellar.co.za and wine auction partner Higgo Jacobs.