The 162nd Hospices de Beaune auction raised a total of $32 million last week, a record for any wine auction conducted by Sotheby's and the highest total in the charity event's long history. "It was a fantastic sale with lots of enthusiastic bidding," Jamie Ritchie, worldwide chairman of Sotheby's Wine & Spirits, told Wine Spectator.
Proceeds from the annual event support the upkeep of the Hospices Civils de Beaune's hospitals. One reason for the record total was the high number of lots—802 barrels, divided into 620 red wine lots and 182 white, the highest number of lots since 828 barrels in 2018. That's also more than double those in last year's sale, and Ritchie noted that the average price per lot was up by 12 percent, a sign of optimism toward Burgundy's 2022 vintage.
The Pièce des Présidents, a unique barrel designated to support one or more charities, set a record sale price of more than $837,000. It was purchased jointly by Maison Joseph Drouhin and Maison Louis Latour, with an additional $113,000 contributed by the Fédération des Négociants-Éleveurs de Grande Bourgogne (a federation of Burgundy wine merchants). The lot was in honor of Louis-Fabrice Latour, who died this past September, and Romane Drouhin, daughter of Frédéric Drouhin, who passed away in 2020.
The Pièce des Présidents, a Corton 2022 made by Hospices de Beaune manager Ludivine Griveau, incorporated grapes from three of the foundation’s parcels: Corton-Bressandes, Corton Renardes and Corton Chaumes. The wine will age in a custom 228-liter barrel made by the Maison Latour cooperage, in collaboration with the Hospices de Beaune.
The proceeds from this special lot will benefit the Princesse Margot Association, which supports children with cancer, and the World Vision organization, whose mission is to aid impoverished children.