The price per lot has fallen flat, but a record amount of fine and rare wine, totaling $478 million, was sold in 2011, up 17 percent from 2010, according to sales results from the major auction houses. Hong Kong was the driving force for a second year in a row, with sales of fine wine soaring by 39 percent in value from US$165 million in 2010 to US$230 million in 2011.
Many U.S. consignors sent their collections to Asia, contributing to the diminishing U.S. auction total which fell 5 percent from $154 million to $146 million.
In Hong Kong, the number of lots on offer in 2011 rose to 27,818 from 17,000 in 2010, but the average price per lot declined 15 percent from $9,700 to $8,227, according to Wine Spectator.
Market taste for first-growth Bordeaux softened while rare Burgundies were bid furiously.
The highest-priced lot of the year was a 55-bottle "superlot" of DRC Romanée-Conti containing every vintage of Romanée-Conti from 1952 to 2007 (except for 1968, which was never released), which brought $813,333 at Acker’s December 2011 Hong Kong auction, from an upper estimate of $300,000.