HDH Wine

Hart Davis Hart Begins 2009 by Selling 98.9%
of Lots for $2.7 Million Amidst Strong Bidding

(February 1, 2009—Chicago, IL)— Hart Davis Hart held its first auction of 2009 this weekend in Chicago, realizing $2,773,421 against a pre-sale auction estimate of $1,823,430- 2,735,820. Top Bordeaux sparked intense bidding, reversing a trend of falling prices that had persisted throughout the autumn of 2008. A case of 1949 Château Cheval Blanc more than doubled the high estimate, bringing $17,925 against an estimate of $5,000-$7,500.

“Interest in this sale was noticeably stronger than what we encountered in December,” commented President Paul Hart. “We saw a marked increase in bidders. This was a strong auction that indicates some stabilization for wine prices. Hammers were midway between the low and high pre-sale estimates for the day.”

Bidders participated from 40 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands, as well as Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Columbia, Denmark, France, Germany, Iceland, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, the Philippines, Puerto Rico, South Korea, Spain, and the United Kingdom. The main dining room of Tru was near capacity and very active for much of the day. Collectors traveled to Chicago from both coasts and regions in between to compete with others who were either bidding on the telephones or live over the internet. Live internet bidders were a very important element of the day, including successful bidders from the United States, Hong Kong, the Bahamas, and Brazil.

“It was exciting to see so much energy in the room; we haven’t seen an atmosphere like this in months,” said Vice-
Chairman Michael Davis.

The seven auctions held by Hart Davis Hart in 2008 at Tru restaurant in Chicago brought $32,273,540, a twenty percent increase over 2007. The firm achieved by far the highest sell-through rate in the industry at 99.8%, with a mere 17 of the 8,257 lots offered in 2008 failing to find a buyer. HDH also conducted the year’s largest wine auction worldwide, The Fox Cellar, which set record prices in many categories and was 100% sold.

Top Ten Lots (inclusive of 19.5% buyer’s premium):
1. Lot 566: 1947 Château Cheval Blanc (9 bs) $33,460 (est. $18,000-28,000)
2. Lot 565: 1945 Château Mouton-Rothschild (5 bs) $20,315 (est. $15,000-22,000)
3. Lot 27: 1982 Château Latour (12 bs) $19,120 (est. $10,000-15,000)
3. Lot 579: 1982 Château Lafite-Rothschild (10 bs) $19,120 (est. $12,000-18,000)
5. Lot 570: 1949 Château Cheval Blanc (12 bs) $17,925 (est. $5,000-7,500)
6. Lot 78: 1989 Château Haut-Brion (6 mags) $15,535 (est. $8,500-$13,000)
6. Lot 297: 2000 Château Lafleur (12 bs) $15,535 (est. $10,000-15,000)
6. Lot 98: 2000 Château Lafleur (12 bs) $15,535 (est. $10,000-15,000)
9. Lot 77: 1989 Château Haut-Brion (12 bs) $14,340 (est. $8,500-13,000)
9. Lot 569: 1949 Château Cheval Blanc (12 bs) $14,340 (est. $5,000-7,500)

Total aggregate: $2,717,848
Percent sold by lot: 98.93%