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August 2012

With more economic storm clouds on the horizon in Europe, cracks appearing in multiple economies throughout Asia and exports slowing in Australia (although the Australian economy appears to be one of the most resilient of the western economies), more wine is appearing for sale at auctions throughout Australia. The good news is that prices being asked are reasonable and buyers appear to be happy to purchase at these new levels. The large volumes of inexpensive but good quality wine available through multiple online sales channels has affected the prices of the mid range wines and it remains to be seen just how long the current price levels can be maintained.

May 2011

Auction volumes across Australia have been teetering on the edge for some time during 2011. For the moment though, good quality stock is clearing more readily and at better prices than this time last year but the mid range wines are suffering from a lack of interest, generally until the next lower price barrier is breached, which suddenly induces a flurry of buying and then selling activity, which fizzles out again soon after. There is still a lot of cash around for purchasing luxury goods as can be seen by the sea of Penfolds changing hands in the Eastern states. Mature vintages are being purchased by large re-sellers and then capitalised into the retail market at massive mark-ups, which is in turn buoying up many of the prices at auction. The markets appetite for Penfolds bin 707 shows no signs of abating with demand for the 1998 vintage rocketing the price to new highs with Henschke Hill of Grace sitting firmly in the passenger seat. Magnums in general are starting to pick up in popularity now that the excess volume is starting to drain off while older good quality ports, once the darling of the investor market of the 70's, which made a brief comeback in recent years, but have dropped significantly again, bled as much as 70% of their value as quantities of stock appeared on the national auction market, got absorbed at bargain prices and then re-appeared into retail auctions such as EBay.

July 2010

Sales results from around Australia indicate that we are entering a new era of price rationalisation. Buyers are stronger in the market than ever before but are strictly controlling the amount paid for core wines. Penfolds Grange is becoming less and less of an investment option to certain buyers and many excellent vintages (such as the 1996) have suffered massive price drops recently, exasperated by some merchants who have been caught short, buying up massive quantities of stock and then being forced to sell it at a loss to recover capital. The downward spiral of prices will not get any relief over the next few years as more and more stock becomes available into the secondary market. There are however many wines that are still in demand and are achieving great prices when consigned to auction. The next few months will be interesting; to say the least.

April 2010
So far this year, the buying trend appears stable, although demand is mixed with a surge, originating overseas, in demand for certain wines such as Penfolds bin 707.  Grange has not outperformed as some analysts have suggested it would but remained more or less steady. Later this year should prove very interesting as many of the "Golden Boomers" start to liquidate their assets in anticipation of retirement. The infamous 1st of January 2011 is fast approaching and it will be interesting to see just how this will affect wine prices.

Brief Analysis & Facts- 1986 Penfolds Grange Bin 95
Jeremy Oliver; 95/100 drink 2016 to 2026
Robert Parker; 99/100 drink 2005 to 2030

Australian Market Activity (April 2009 to March 2010)
Yearly high price paid; $652
Yearly low price paid; $475
Lowest price paid for damaged; $301
Average price paid (including damaged/ullaged); $513
Current retail price; $850
Number of bottles offered to auction; 340
Number of those damaged/ullaged: 213
Demand (Amount purchased from offered lots): 67%

A brief summary of 2009
There are a number of very interesting scenarios developing within the secondary wine market. The current economic crisis is affecting availability of stock without a corresponding rise in price, a tipping point is approaching where the old rules of supply and demand will bring one or the other into sharp focus. Older classics are in demand and the newer labels are suffering a backlash. 2010 will see some interesting trends developing.

21st August 2008
A somewhat lacklustre end for the August wine auction. Although a number of records were set and a rare bottle of 1961 Penfolds St Henri (estimated between $150 to $210) fetched $312 at close, quantity was somewhat down with many buyers taking a cautious approach to prices and volume in the current economic climate. Grange prices appear to be easing backwards compared with prices being achieved earlier this year.

Prices realised at Wickman's in recent months for Penfolds Grange;

Vintage Price Auction
Penfolds Grange Collection (1951 - 2002) $150,000 Jul-08
1962 Penfolds Grange $662 Aug-08
1964 Penfolds Grange $376 Aug-08
1965 Penfolds Grange $381 Aug-08
1966 Penfolds Grange $493 Aug-08
1968 Penfolds Grange $452 Aug-08
1970 Penfolds Grange $270 Aug-08
1973 Penfolds Grange $221 Aug-08
1974 Penfolds Grange $350 May-08
1975 Penfolds Grange $340 Aug-08
1977 Penfolds Grange $300 Feb-08
1978 Penfolds Grange $343 Aug-08
1979 Penfolds Grange $247 Aug-08
1980 Penfolds Grange $235 Jul-08
1981 Penfolds Grange $245 Aug-08
1982 Penfolds Grange $300 Mar-08
1984 Penfolds Grange $234 Aug-08
1985 Penfolds Grange $290 Feb-08
1986 Penfolds Grange $425 Jul-08
1987 Penfolds Grange $246 Jul-08
1988 Penfolds Grange $281 Jul-08
1989 Penfolds Grange $230 Jul-08
1990 Penfolds Grange $466 Jul-08
1991 Penfolds Grange $322 Jul-08
1992 Penfolds Grange $260 Jul-08
1993 Penfolds Grange $265 Jul-08
1994 Penfolds Grange $265 Jul-08
1995 Penfolds Grange $255 Aug-08
1996 Penfolds Grange $331 Aug-08
1997 Penfolds Grange $282 Jul-08
1998 Penfolds Grange $490 Jul-08
1999 Penfolds Grange $292 Jul-08
2000 Penfolds Grange $380 May-08
2001 Penfolds Grange $400 Apr-08
2002 Penfolds Grange $370 Aug-08























24th July 2008
A vibrant end to our July sale saw eager bidders competing for the few lots of Bordeaux on offer with 99% of them selling within their estimated price range and bidders from Europe driving up the price in the final hours. Penfolds Grange, 707 and Henschke Hill of Grace saw spirited bidding by trade and private collectors alike from all across Australia. A rare collection of Penfolds Grange vintages from 1951 to 2002 was the highlight of this auction, selling after auction to a private collector in South Australia for $150,000 plus premium. Although not a record for a collection of this nature, it was still a very good price considering the current economic downturn.


27th May and 26th June 2008
As we approached the end of the financial year we saw a slowing down of bidding and prices paid for many of the wines on offer. The expected peak for many of our premium Australian iconic wines has, I believe, been tested and found wanting with lower prices than expected being the support level for many. On the other hand many other premium wines have seen an increase in demand and price where they have been treading water until now.


29th April 2008
Whilst clearance rates for our April auction were down by about 10% on the same time last year, the shift towards quality wines at higher prices means that the values achieved are up by almost 25% for the same volume sold. Glaetzer, Hardy's, Wolf Blass and Torbreck appeared as the flavour of the month in heated bidding between Australian buyers with Western Australia and South Australia slugging it out for pole position in the bidding stakes. Penfolds Grange continues to be snapped up by buyers from Australia and Asia, with the majority destined for consumption rather than investment. As the available quantity is consumed, buyers are anxious to pay higher premiums to secure their stock. Sellers should beware of holding out for too long however, as supply decreases, consumers and buyers tend to shift their focus to other, more readily available wines, and the price can stabilise or even drop.

27th March 2008
Another excellent auction with high clearances on most iconic Australian wines (Penfolds, Jim Barry, Rockford, Wendouree) and a little increase in the cult wines (Noons, Greenock Creek) as well. The secondary fine wine market continues to show signs that we are entering a new phase of investment fever. With the turmoil over recent months in the worlds financial markets showing no signs of abating there are a lot of people waving the "alternative investment" banner and fine wines inevitably falls under this heading; with prices being realised for Penfolds Grange trending upwards with noticeable demand being placed on those vintages with smaller production figures rather than noted quality.

28th February 2008
The market in fine wine has certainly turned around over the last few months. What was once popular (Noons, Torbreck, Greenock Creek) has slipped from buyers radar screens and our local icons such as Penfolds Grange, Penfolds 707, early Seppelts Para ports, Rockford Basket Press, D'Arenberg etc. have rallied and are commanding excellent prices compared to the same time a year ago.

31st January 2008
Just before the closing a a huge surge in bidding cleared most of the wines for this first wine auction of the year. Seppelts Para Ports are making a comeback with record prices being paid for pre-50's bottles. Whilst most bidders were from Australia, a larger than normal percentage of bidding came from Europe, Asia and the USA, with D'Arenberg, Wendouree and Rockford being in favour.

7th November & 4th December 2007
A drop in clearance rates as we neared the end of the year, although many record prices were again paid for quality wines of proven provenance in both of the remaining auctions for 2007. Large formats were achieving well above their previously estimated high range with a lot of active bidding and most Penfolds wines achieved the higher end of their estimated range.

9th October 2007
Although many excellent prices (in some cases record values) were achieved for many of the wines, the volume of wine cleared from the catalogue was significantly down compared to the last few months. Quality rather than quantity appeared to be the order of the day with the most significant and heated bidding occurring over the lots with Guaranteed Provenance, with more and more buyers eager to pay a premium for wine that has been correctly cellared.

18th September 2007
The best clearance rates so far this year and a mixed bag of results. A very rare 1962 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti, Romanee Conti went for an absolute steal at $2,500 while a couple of bottles of 1982 Cheval Blanc were bid up to $1,100 each and a bottle of 1976 Chateau Latour was knocked up to $225. On the domestic scene a bottle of 1965 Penfolds Grange was snapped up for $350, numerous vintages of Rockford basket press are attracting $100+, magnums from most classic and cult wineries seem to be the flavour of the month and a bottle of 1996 Jim Barry The Armagh went for an unbelievable $209.

22nd August 2007
Another auction ending with great clearance rates with most of the bidding activity occurring on the closing day of the auction with frantic bids being placed in the last few hours, seeing some record prices being paid for a number of classic and cult wines.

31st July 2007
An excellent auction with the best clearance rates so far this year, with the next few months looking to be even better. There was a lot of active and competitive bidding for many of the favourites, classics and cults with an increasingly rare bottle of 1962 Penfolds Bin 60a selling for over $3000, a bottle of 1992 Chateau Mouton-Rothschild knocked down to over $990, 1993 Petrus at the bargain price of over $750, 1995 Duck Muck selling for just under $300 and Penfolds Grange of various vintages fetching in the mid-range of the prices estimated. Thanks to the generous support of a number of Barossa wineries and the dedication of some local businesses we auctioned off a number of donated wines and raised over $1350 for a couple of sight impaired local lads - Thank you so much to all those wonderful bidders who helped raise this money.

27th June 2007
Quite a sluggish end of financial year auction, with below average clearance rates, possibly attributed to the massive amount of wine released from the failed Heritage investment fund absorbing large amounts of buyers funds.

29th May 2007
A reasonable auction with good overall clearance rates but with the market showing caution and restraint.

30th April 2007
A very slow auction with only moderate clearance rates, although very good prices were achieved for a those wines that were on offer.

27th March 2007
A good auction with a very good clearance rate and some excellent prices realised for many of the wines on offer.

28th February 2007
I should get around to posting results from the second half of last year and the opening of this year sometime this century.

31st January 2007
To be announced. (This was a very good auction with excellent clearances).

20th June 2006
At the request of vendors, Wickman's launched a surprise, end of financial year wine auction. Many vendors have been clearly concerned with the fall in price of fine wine on the secondary market and the glut of wine at the mid to lower end that keeps soaking up cash from the higher price points. Vendors all around Australia recently requested extra wine auctions to be held so as to be able to shift their wine in advance of the flood that is now hitting the secondary wine market and before the end of the financial year. Vendors holding on to large stocks of wine that they had purchased with a view to making a profit are clearly concerned that they will be left holding wine that will be worth a tiny fraction of what they paid for it and are trying to cut their losses now.

Wickman's June wine auction provided a fitting end to a successful financial year for our vendors, with most happily clearing the majority of their holdings, even though the prices they realised were not as high as they may have originally anticipated. Most vendors appeared pleased to divest themselves of excess stock while buyers were delighted to get quality wine at bargain prices, confident in the provenance of the wine they were buying. Since introducing the provenance rating system in 2005, Wickmans have noted that wines which have been rated as guaranteed provenance have cleared at a higher rate with significantly higher premiums being paid for the assurance of wine that has a guaranteed purchase and storage history. Vendors that were disappointed at their clearance rate were those that, against Wickman’s recommendations, set higher reserves for their wine than the market was willing to bear.

Wines that attracted serious attention from buoyant buyers were 2002 Jim Barry The Armargh which has been very popular all year, reaching a high of $273 per bottle in February and now settling down to the $150 mark in June, while 1994 Woodstock The Stocks was extremely popular, with a number of experienced enthusiasts setting their sights on this wine and happily outbidding each other right up until the last second of the wine auction closing.

Other popular wines that bidders picked up for a bargain were 1999 Penfolds Magill estate for $46, 1999 Penfolds RWT at $79, 1998 Torbreck the Factor knocked down to $95, 1993 Lindemans St George Cabernet at $25, a magnum of 1998 Hardy's Eileen Hardy shiraz at $126, 1994 Greenock Creek seven acre to $54, 2004 Noon reserve shiraz $81 and 1995 Penfolds bin 389 at $35.

Our Our first back vintage tasting event of the year to evaluate back vintage wines was a very pleasant success. Wickman’s in conjunction with Oliver's Taranga wines held a vertical tasting of 10 vintages of their Shiraz and 4 of their award winning HJ reserve shiraz (the 2000 HJ reserve winning the Winestate wine of the year award). In attendance was winemaker Corrina Rayment who led all participants through a thoroughly enjoyable history of the wine she has made. All wines from 1994 to present day barrel samples were evaluated and tasting notes and impressions can be found on the Wickman’s website. Anyone wishing to participate in our back vintage tastings should sign up as a member of the wine auction site to receive future notification of events. Tasting notes for the wines can be seen here »

Wine auctions for the remainder of 2006 will be held at approximately one month intervals.



General wine auction results for 2005 and outlook for 2006
The fine wine market in the latter half of 2005 was looking a bit slow with collectors and consumers alike starting to apply the brakes on wine purchases even although the general economic outlook touted by the majority of the press was for optimism and growth. However, buyers of luxury goods, such as wine, are being cautious, making more informed decisions, they are also prepared to wait, no longer in a hurry to engage in battle for limited stockpiles of their most precious producers. The simple fact is that, now more than ever, there is a lot of quality wine in the marketplace at excellent prices with the trend for new releases being pushed towards quantity, better quality and lower prices.

Members bidding in our two wine auctions during the latter half of 2005 tended to throw their support behind cabernet and blends and larger format bottles and although they were ultimately spurned, possibly in reaction to a number of negative tasting reports filtering into blog-space and internet forums, characteristic of the September and October wine auctions for 2005, was the tremendous interest shown in the Rockford basket press, Kalleske and the various Greenock creek shiraz's but without the commitment from the members to pony up for the reserves being asked by the vendors.

However, the single vineyard wines of both Rockford and Kalleske continue to fetch well above their release prices with the 1998 Rockford SVS pressings for $161,the Australian wine auction debut of the 1999 Rockford Helbig and Shiraz Pressings dropped at $151 and $140 respectively and the 2003 Kalleske Johann Georg fetching $161. Other performers were the 1998 Penfolds bin 707 for $128, 1996 Penfolds St. Henri for $81 and some bargains were swooped upon with $112 being paid for a 2001 Kaesler Old Bastard and cases of 1996 Hardy's Eileen Hardy almost overlooked at $45 per bottle.

During 2005 Wickman's, with the generous support of the wine industry, continued to raise money for various charities including The Asian Tsunami Appeal, the Eyre Peninsula Fire appeal and the Women and Children’s hospital fund and hope to support even more causes in 2006 by giving as much back to the community as we can in which ever ways we can manage.

Additionally, 2005 saw Wickman's introduce a guaranteed provenance grading system on all lots to empower members with the knowledge of the wines purchasing history as well as how it has been stored, invaluable information for commercial wine buyers and collectors alike.

As a bit of fun for active members and as a means of getting wine product samples to a highly focused target audience on behalf of wineries, we introduced, what turned out to be, a very popular bidding contest into each wine auction, with each winning bidder going into a draw at the end of the wine auction and receiving one entry for each bid they made with fantastic prizes sponsored by Auswine.com, Bordex wine racks, Kalleske, Wolf Blass, Winefront Monthly, Marius Wines, De Bortoli and WineIndustryJobs.com.

The outlook for 2006, whilst not bleak should be cautious and I think that the first half will open with potential, with analysts and media predicting growth and encouraging consumers to spend, however, statistics on some growth forecasts from the USA may indicate the USA's foundation for spending (the recent housing boom) is faltering, which could have a knock-on affect through the Chinese economy (already in a production surplus) which in turn may affect the Australian resource boom which will prune off some the excess growth in our local economy, slowing down consumer spending even more.

28th June 2005
The Australian financial year ended on a positive note for the June 28th fine wine auction when a late rally across the board flared into some rather heated bidding wars, resulting in nearly a 90% overall clearance rate. A number of smaller investment buyers built up support in numerous classics and some of the cult brands popular in the States, no doubt suspecting that the US exchange rate is about to move in their favour by the end of the year, renewing upward price pressure on these wines from across the ocean. Although this is a good possibility, it could be a dangerous assumption to make just now, and it would be a good time to exercise caution with a market becoming more volatile and numerous accounts of good quality wine being dumped onto the market.

This wine auction was our third this year featuring the new charity section. On offer this time were a number of parcels of Pennyfield wine that were specifically made for the Women and Children's Hospital Fund. The wine was tested fit for human consumption and given the thumbs up by wine scribe Ric Einstein of Torbwine fame, but unfortunately the wine didn't make it into the hearts and minds of bidders and ended up with only 3 dozen going under the hammer.

Kalleske wines managed to keep up their popularity with the debut of the very rare 2003 Johann Georg Shiraz emerging at $162, various lots of 2002 and 2003 shiraz down to $70. A very rare mixed lot of Hazyblur wines closed out at the bargain price of $36, while quite a few parcels of Greenock Creek Roennfeldt Road Shiraz featured in some heavy bidding between local and overseas buyers with the 1999 closing at $197 whilst the magnificent 1998 vintage, closed at a bargain price of $310. Bidding wars flared up at the last moment on 1996 Penfolds St Henri ($71), 1996 Peter Lehmann Mentor ($40) and 1998 Highbank Basket Pressed Cabernets ($45). Whilst 2002 Seppelts St Peters dropped to $71, 1997 Rosemount Estate Balmoral finished $32 and 1998 Penfolds Bin 389 Cabernet Shiraz closed at $40. Amongst the cult wines Kaesler continued its run of popularity with 2002 The Bogan Shiraz finishing quite well up at $86 and 2002 The Stonehorse up to $39. Noons 2002 Reserve Shiraz finished the evening holding out on $137.

Although closing at the vendors requested reserve there was lack-lustre interest shown from buyers for 1996 E&E Black Pepper Shiraz, 2002 Massena the 11th Hour shiraz and some mixed lots of Penfolds and Dutschke fortifieds, resulting in some buyers getting some unexpected bargains.

A number of lots of Wendouree, 1998 Rockford Basket Press, 1998 Rockford SVS, 1996 Galah Shiraz, 2003 Kalleske Old Vine Grenache and Glaymond wines attracted alot of potential buyer interest but the vendors had set too high reserves and bidders did not materialise.

14th April 2005
Genuine collectors and drinkers are certainly getting some bargains at auction these days, whilst flippers and those who were buying and selling wine for a quick profit have disappeared. There are still many wine investors in the market but they tend to be cherry picking the bargains and waiting patiently for the market to turn.

Many of the cult wines that commanded high prices quite recently are now out of favour on the secondary market and its quite telling that those who still command a premium are those that have done well with local wine critics and who have continued to support a solid foundation of Aussie drinkers rather than search overseas for a quick dollar.

For the second time this year we featured a charity category amongst our regular commercial lots, with all money raised donated equally between the World Vision Child Rescue Appeal and the Women's and Children's Hospital Foundation. The charity lots were very generously donated by Jeremy Oliver's Onwine website, Cullen Wines, Whistler Wines, Ross Estate, Liebichwein, Seppelts and Massena wines. All of the charity lots started with an opening bid of $1, no reserve and no commission and were the subject of very competitive bidding.

Our commercial lots were very popular, although most lots were not highly contested with many bidders walking away with bargains. A number of bottles of 1996 Penfolds Grange went for $266 each, 2001 Dutschke Oscar Semmler had many interested buyers but eventually closed at the bargain price of $36 each, 2002 Kalleske Shiraz is still hot, up $5 to $80 per bottle with the 2003 not far behind. A bottle of the superb 1994 Baileys 1920 Block shiraz fell for $29 whilst the ever popular 1996 Penfolds St. Henri was hotly contested at $53. 1994 Henschke Hill of Grace found a home at $211, 2002 Kaesler The Bogan lost it for $79 and number of lots of 2002 Massena the Eleventh Hour laid it down to $41 per bottle.


10th February 2005
When the virtual gavel dropped on the last lot for our February 2005 online wine auction, it was more apparent than ever that the market was soft at the lower end of any suggested price range with increasing pressure on sellers to opt for lower reserves.

With a spiralling exchange rate, making Australian wine less attractive to overseas buyers who are influenced by the remarks of wine critic Robert Parker, and the heat taken out of the wine investment segment of the market, both inter-related events, there was little upward pressure on prices with many buyers who were prepared to pay large premiums only a year or so ago for cult wines, now holding off, developing a wait and see approach.

Prices appear to be in flux and trending towards the lower end of any anticipated price range while buyers find other, more tangible and domestic means, to evaluate a wine. Online, buyers are turning to large, Australian online wine communities who share tasting notes and critiques amongst themselves such as the Auswine discussion forum. As well as publishing the remarks of general wine consumers, the discussion boards host published results from organized tasting panels of wine enthusiasts/consumers such as the Adelaide Blacktongues who meet on a regular basis and taste blindly through a range of aged and recent release wines.

This wine auction saw a number of wines stand out amongst Australian bidders with Penfolds, Rockfords and Henschke being the most sought after lots. A 1961 Yalumba Galway Claret went for $62, a bottle of 1986 Penfolds 389 fetched $97 whilst a Magnum of the 1998 vintage went for $150, bottles of 2002 D'Arenberg The Dead Arm were being knocked out at the bargain price of $48 and 1998 Henschke Hill of Grace were going to low bids of $220.

Wickman's recently launched a new charity wine category for regular inclusion in its commercial online wine auctions. All of the proceeds raised from the wine donated and listed in the new category are free of fees and commissions with all proceeds being donated to specific charities, typically an international and a local charity.

The newly launched charity category in the February wine auction raised over $1,500 from 12 bottles and 2 signed magnums that were donated by Kalleske Wines, with the debut of the 2003 Kalleske Shiraz magnums fetching $300 each and the 2003 bottles each raising $80. The money raised was donated equally between The Asian Tsunami Appeal and The Eyre Peninsula Fire appeal. The next auctions charity proceeds in April will be donated equally to World Vision Child Rescue and a local Australian children's charity.

The concept of having a charity category in each wine auction held through the year was inspired by Troy Kalleske from Kalleske wines who generously donated his wine for the initial wine auction. We decided that is was such a good idea that, in addition to its annual Multiple Sclerosis charity wine auction, a portion of each other wine auction held through the year should carry on the tradition and raise money for charity.

29th November 2004
Just prior to the November wine auction opening, US wine critic, Robert Parker, reviewed a comprehensive selection of Australian wines, catapulting many of them into instant cult status by awarding them points in the high nineties. Vendors who held wines reviewed by Parker added a "Parker Premium" to their wines just prior to the wine auction, doubling, sometimes tripling the previously requested reserve price. However, whilst interest remained high in these wines the bids never achieved the expected price set by the vendors with the market not prepared to absorb the high "Parker Premiums" at this time.

An interesting point to note is, perhaps due to the sheer number of high scoring Australian wines reviewed by Parker, many buyers only appear to be prepared to pay significant "Parker Premiums" for Australian wines scoring 96 and above points.

As the available quantity of these wines diminish and the exchange rate changes in favour of the overseas buyer then these wines will again start attracting more bidders and increase in price.

A number of the wines where the vendors expectation of a large return was too high was with the 2001 and 2002 Greenock Creek wines. Whilst the 2001 releases were highly regarded by Parker with most of the wines scoring between 96 to 100 points, the 2002 wines, whilst not reviewed until mid-2005, are considered a better wine and subsequently attracted as high an expectation as the 2001 vintage. However, the results were significantly less than expected with the Greenock Creek Alice block shiraz achieving $55 for both the 2001 and 2002 vintages, the Greenock Creek Apricot block achieving $85 for the 2001 and $50 for the 2002, the 2001 Greenock Creek Creek block achieving $155 per bottle and the 2001 Greenock Creek Seven Acre attracting $65. Meanwhile, the latest cult Australian wine to captivate the palates of the world have been the Kalleske wines which have attracted a huge amount of praise from Robert Parker in his reviews of the 2002 and 2003 vintages and have firmed the secondary market price for both the 2002 and 2003 Kalleske Greenock Shiraz at the $80 mark.

There was alot of interest shown in the wines of Wayne Dutschke, another cult Australian wine maker, whose 2001 and 2002 single barrel shiraz continues to steadily rise in price, this time achieving a price of $92 per bottle, while a very rare imperial of 2001 Dutschke Oscar Semmler shiraz, only one of six produced, was knocked down to the bargain price of $631.

Also of interest were the latest release Rockford SVS wines, the 1998 SVS Flaxman and 1998 SVS Pressings being snapped up for $130 each, the 1996 Rockford Basket Press shiraz went at $91, 2002 Amon Ra shiraz at $106, a 1992 Henschke Horizontal Magnum collection went for $391 each, 2002 Clarendon Hills Astralis Shiraz down at $250, 2002 Torbreck Les Amis at $220, a rare Seppelt Great Western sparkling burgundy dating back to approximately 1930 (and still drinking quite well) was knocked down at $150, there were also a number of well cellared Yalumba the Signature wines on offer, in particular the famous Yalumba 1961 Special Reserve Stock Galway Vintage Claret (knocked down to $61), the very same wine that Sir Robert Menzies declared in 1965 to be the best Australian red he had tasted, subsequently this wine was known as "The Menzies" and gave birth to the idea of a best-of-vintage “The Signature” wine..

17th September 2004
Our September wine auction wound down with good clearance of most wines and over 20% of the winning bidders coming from overseas, mainly Europe and the USA. On the homefront prices slipped across the board although there was good demand for many of the Penfolds wines. Dutschke 2001 single barrel shiraz debuted at $95, Greenock Creek 1998 Roennfeldt Road Shiraz down at $301, Shirvington 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon down at $78 and a number of lots of 2002 Kalleske shiraz were popular although closing down at $60 per bottle.

MS Charity Wine Auction - 30th July 2004
The 2nd annual charity wine auction to raise money for Multiple Sclerosis research succeeded in auctioning off over $5,000 of wine and wine related items. Two weeks of bidding saw some heated competition for many of the bottles that had been signed by wine makers. The most active lots were a bottle of 1998 Wolf Blass Black label Signed by John Glaetzer ($160), a magnum of 2002 Burge Family G3 Grenache Shiraz Mourvedre signed by Rick Burge ($147), a magnum of Bass Phillip Premium Pinot Noir ($289) and a signed 1994 Magnum of St. Hallett Blackwell Shiraz ($141). Other highlights were a bottle of 1999 Noon Eclipse raising $61, a bottle of Evans Family shiraz signed by Len Evans raising $43, signed bottles of Dutschke fortifieds fetched over $35 each, very rarely seen bottles of Hazyblur 2002 shiraz fetched over $70 each, a bottle of Clonakilla 2002 Shiraz Viognier signed by Tim Kirk raised in excess of $80, a magnum of Lake's Folly Cabernet Blend ($129) and a signed bottle of the 2002 Kalleske Greenock shiraz saw some heavy bidding right to the last minute of closing and finished with a high of $94 (a $60 premium on the cellar door price of only a few months ago).

A big thank you to all those who bid and of course to the following wineries and wine companies who donated or supported us.

15th May 2004
Our May wine auction ended with a good clearance of most wines with nearly all of the Penfolds Grange, Wendouree and D'arenberg snapped up at the last moment by Australian Bidders. Hammer prices for Wendouree Shiraz ranged from $56 for the 2000, $72 for the 1994 Shiraz through to $147 for the 1990 Shiraz. Some of the less popular, but just as excellent, Wendouree achieved prices of $48 for the 1998 Shiraz Mataro and $56 for the 1998 Cabernet. A rare, hotly contested magnum of 1998 D'arenberg Dead Arm shiraz went for $156. 1985 and 1986 Imperials of Irvine Grand Merlot were knocked down to bargain prices of $400 and $450 respectively. Bidders from the USA are getting quieter yet a noticeable number of Asian and a good turnout of European bidders seem to be taking their place and were very interested in many of the 'cult' Australian wines with the hammer price of the 2002 Shirvington shiraz at $125, the cabernet for $90, the Noon cabernet Reserve softer at $70 and 1998 Greenock Creek Roennfeldt Road Shiraz at $300. Demand for Vintage port seems to be weakening slightly with a number of well known vintage ports going uncontested and being knocked down at discounted rates.

14th February 2004
The online February wine auction attracted bidding from all over the world and the free membership policy attracted many new members for this first wine auction of the year. Bidding was slow in the early stages of the wine auction and many of the early bidders did not take advantage of the proxy system on the website and thereby lost out to last minute bidders who scooped up many of the wines at bargain prices. A number of early vintage reds that were considered curios by their original owners, came under heavy fire from a number of Australian bidders, achieving over double the reserves in many cases. A collection of earlier Rockford Basket Press vintages were left wanting during the early stages of the wine auction but came under concentrated bidding in the closing stages with the final hammer price on the 1985 at $78, the 1987 for $61, the 1988 for $56, 1989 for $58 and the 1991 for $84. A small collection of large format Irvine Grand Merlots were left untouched including an imperial each of the 1985 and 1986 and various 1.5 and 3.0 litre magnums from similar vintages. Other large formats on offer were a rare Imperial of 1991 St. Hallets Old Block Shiraz which realised $500, an Imperial of 1992 Wolf Blass Black Label realised $462 and two of the very first Magnums of Grange, the 1979, realised over $2,800 each. There was healthy bidding from Australian and Asian clients for recent release of Noons achieving $90 for the 2002 reserve cabernet and $131 for the reserve shiraz of the same vintage. Vintage and tawny ports continued to be popular, dominated by some of the more classically sought after vintage ports (Saltrams, St Hallets and yalumba).

4th October 2003
The 4th October wine auction was a commercial wine wine auction with buyers paying a small premium on the hammer price of the wine. The most sought after items were a generous collection of magnums including Wynn's John Riddoch, Penfolds 707 and Henscke Hill of Grace. There was quite a bit of heated competition for some of the limited production wines that are sought after from the USA and whose prices tend to inflate exponentially with very generous write ups from wine critic Robert Parker. Highlights were 3 bottles of 2001 Shirvington Shiraz that were selling at $45 a year ago but are fetching over $130 each (including premium) now. Also hotly contested were a small selection of Marquis Philips wines, very few of which remain in Australia and their availability is even more limited now that they have dumped their Australian mail order list to sell exclusively to the USA.

MS Charity Wine Auction - 19th July 2003
The 19th July wine auction was the product of a charity fund raiser to raise money for Multiple Sclerosis research (http://www.msaustralia.org.au ), the result of which helped to earn his nine year old son the title of the highest child fundraiser in Australia for the annual MS Readathon (http://www.ms-readathon.org/), not bad considering there were over 64,000 participating fundraisers.

Many wineries from all around Australia generously donated their wine and bids were easy to get moving considering there were no reserves, no premiums and all bids started at $1. The bidding was fiercest for many of the signed bottles, in particular a bottle of Rockford 1998 Basket Press Shiraz signed by Robert O’Callaghan went for $150, a Henschkes 1999 Cyril Henschke signed by Stephen Henschke went for $166, Noon 2001 Eclipse signed by Drew Noon went for $77, Henschke 2000 Mount Edelstone Shiraz signed by Stephen Henschke went for $136, Clonakilla 2001 Shiraz Viognier signed by Tim Kirk went for $71 and many more signed bottles were auctioned off at a very fair premium to their usual market value depending on the wine and the signature.

There was also firm bidding for Hazyblur, a wine that rarely, if ever, comes up for auction in Australia and has got such good reviews in the States that none gets sold in Australia except to a few select restaurants. The Hazyblur 2002 Barossa Shiraz fetched $50.

Sponsors Feedback

Kane I commend you on your hard work in supporting the MS Society as it is often overlooked by many in our society. Well done & congratulations.
Kindest Regards
Andrew Tierney
Wirra Wirra Vineyards

Kane's letter is the best thankyou we can get. His letter was lovely. It is pinned up on our noticeboard and I have shown it to my supervisor. So thank you and send Kane our best wishes.
Kind Regards
Andrea Wooley
Great Western, Victoria

What a wonderful son you have, it is families such as yours that lead by example to the community and we at Brokenwood would love to support you with a donation of wine, to assist in fund raising for MS, a truly worthy cause.

Natalie Biggs
Brokenwood Wines

Hi Mark, we have used up our allocation for charity, however I am a sucker for kids. I will get Trish to send down a couple of bottles for the auction,

Mark Summerfield
Summerfield Wines

A Lovely letter from Kane (wasn't a dry eye in the office) - will be happy to assist again next year.

All the very best,
Kay Brothers Amery Wines

Congratulations on achieving such a wonderful result with the fundraising.
Janet Liebich

Hi Kane,
Thank you for your E-Mail. We were very happy to have been able to help you out. Glad to hear that so much money was raised.

Ross and Robyne Trimboli
Hazyblur Wines

That is FANTASTIC. Pass on my gratitude to Kane for his effort

Nicole Hodgson
Seppelt Wines, Seppeltsfield

Thanks for your thank you letter - glad it all was successful - love your letter Kane - and by all means contact us again next year. It just goes to show that we always do it better in SA - even the eight year olds!
Rockford Wines

Thank Kane very much for the lovely letter, it was perfect. I placed a copy in our folder where we have our certificates and medals etc. I am so pleased for you with the great response. Well done!

Majella Wines

Fantastic News! We are proud to be involved.

The Hruska Family
Maximilian's Wines and Restaurant


Congratulations Kane!!!

Julian Castagna
Castagna Vineyard

What a great result for Kane - our sincere congratulations to him for such a fine effort for MS.

Kind regards,
Annabelle Waugh
Greenock Creek Wines

Congratulations on the success of your fundraiser, a fantastic result! I am glad that we could be a part of such a worthy cause.

Kind regards,
Elizabeth Ellis
Campbells Wines

It was a pleasure to donate to your auction. Congratulations on the result.
Please let me know when next time comes around.

Jeremy Oliver
Onwine Publications

Basket Press 

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