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The Great Domaine Leroy Auction

Over the years I have worked in the wine industry, I have helped my clients build up some amazing collections such as the DRC ‘Superlot’ that broke records when auctioned by Sotheby’s (Hong Kong) in 2014. This was a 114-bottle flight containing six bottles of each vintage of La Romanée-Conti itself spanning vintages 1992-2010.


When a long-standing client, and good friend, first approached me with the idea of auctioning a prized collection of Domaine Leroy, which he had collected with my assistance since the year 2000, our conversation quickly turned to whether Atlas could hold an online auction itself and therefore engage directly with prospective buyers. Atlas has been interested in the possibility of holding its own auctions for some time and had already identified market-leading software that could be embedded on our website. By holding such auctions ourselves, we can dispense with unnecessary buyer’s premiums and simply take our commission from the vendor, as would be the case with a normal broking transaction, ensuring the vendor maximises the value of a rare collection. There is little doubt that the transparency of such a model holds appeal for both the vendor, who wishes to reach the widest possible audience for their prized collection, and the purchaser, who can avoid hefty additional fees. Such transparency also ties in with our ethos at Atlas.


Our inaugural online auction, The Great Domaine Leroy Auction, commences on the 8th November 2021 and concludes on the 6th December 2021 at 18:00 (GMT). It focuses solely on the wines of one of the greatest of all Burgundian domaines, namely Domaine Leroy. This collection has been pieced together over more than two decades and encompasses 65 different lots spanning vintages 1996 to 2014. Even more remarkable is the fact that the collection contains several original wooden cases of the very rarest Domaine Leroy Grand Cru, including two vintages of the Musigny and several vintages of Richebourg. Many of the wines included were purchased by the seller from a UK merchant who, at one point in time, enjoyed an impressive direct allocation. Indeed, I sold these wines to the client concerned while working for this merchant, and the client has kept the original invoices, so we can confirm the provenance of a number of these cases by showing the invoice with personal details redacted. Such supporting paperwork is seldom available and should therefore give any prospective buyers confidence.


Naturally, these early purchases have been added to over the years, but in each instance, we are aware of the source. Some wines have been consolidated with Atlas by the client, who purchased elsewhere, whereas others were sourced directly via Atlas. All stocks have been photographed and we are able to show an extensive range of high-resolution images on our auction site. Additionally, all the stocks are currently stored in Atlas’ dedicated reserves area at LCB Vinothèque. For all stocks purchased, we can assist in arranging prompt worldwide shipping – quotations can be supplied on request.


This sale marks the start of a new facet of our business and highlights the services we at Atlas can provide, not only in assembling remarkable collections in the first place, but also in marketing them should the client be inclined to sell. I hope you find this incredibly rare auction to be of interest and, as you will have gathered, we have worked tirelessly to provide all the detail that you may require to purchase with confidence. We have included an overview of the estate written by William Kelley that we have been allowed to republish with the kind permission of The World of Fine Wine. Additionally, we have added detailed notes on each individual wine as well as condition notes for each lot listed.


Happy bidding!

Simon Larkin MW
Managing Director

Atlas Fine Wines Limited.

 
 

LALOU BIZE-LEROY: FORCE OF NATURE 
Published with the kind permission of The World Of Fine Wine. https://worldoffinewine.com/


The winemaker behind Domaines Leroy and d’Auvenay is one of the most influential figures in modern Burgundy, says William Kelley, who meets the ever-mercurial Mme Lalou to look back on her stellar career


Lalou Bize-Leroy, Burgundy’s reigning grande dame, has confounded her critics. Those who scoffed at her wholehearted embrace of biodynamic viticulture in the 1980s are now confronted by scores of domaines following suit all along the Côte d’Or. Commentators who found Domaine Leroy’s early vintages too stylized are forced to acknowledge the graceful evolution of those first essays, as well as the immense strides the estate has made since. And anyone who doubted whether the market could sustain Leroy’s extraordinarily high prices for long is obliged to admit that the domaine’s wines dominate any list, short or long, of the world’s most expensive.


Yet if this elfin and mercurial woman feels satisfaction at having proven all the skeptics wrong, she doesn’t show it. “We’re never satisfied,” she is wont to declare. “Ours is a métier of unending doubts, whereby everything remains perpetually in question. And that’s for the best. Only the unimaginative are sure of themselves.” As Madame Bize-Leroy enters her 89th year, that unwillingness to rest on laurels endures; her two estates, Domaine Leroy and Domaine d’Auvenay, may be firmly established as Burgundy’s reference points, but they’re also—as we shall see—among the region’s most innovative.

Click here for the full article telling the Leroy story.