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Penfolds Auction Makes Record

Auction price records were smashed at Langton’s ‘Penfolds: Rewards of Patience’ online auction on Sunday December 16, 2018.

More than $1 million worth of wine went ‘under the hammer’ in the largest ever auction sale devoted exclusively to Penfolds wines.

Australia’s most valuable wine is 1951 Penfolds Grange Hermitage (Shiraz), a single (750ml) bottle of which sold for $80,386. The previous record, also for 1951 Grange, was $78,000 set in June last year. Another bottle sold in December 2017 for $59,416.

Penfolds Grange Bin 95 2014

A new record price of $349,618 was also set for a complete set of Grange (63 bottles, 1951-2013 inclusive).

A new record price of $349,618 was also set for a complete set of Grange (63 bottles, 1951-2013 inclusive). The previous record was $332,608, set in 2017. Another set sold in June 2018 for $308,725.

The original 1951 Grange was an experimental wine that was never commercially released. Only five hogsheads (1500 litres or 2000 bottles) were made and much of it was given away by its creator, the late Max Schubert.

Langton’s estimates that fewer than 20 single bottles remain in existence. They are valued more for their significance and rarity than their intrinsic quality.

The new records made news around the country and you may have seen or heard reports featuring Langton’s General Manager Jeremy Parham or Head of Auctions Tamara Grischy.

Penfolds Grange Hermitage 1951

1951 Penfolds Grange Hermitage (Shiraz), sold for $80,386

Another rarity was a 375ml bottle of 1952 Grange, the first vintage to be sold commercially, which sold for $23,300, making it Australia’s most valuable half-bottle. A full bottle (750ml) of 1952 Grange sold for $34,950, also a record.

The price of Penfolds Bin 60A 1962, a blend of Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon and Barossa Shiraz considered by many to be the best Australian red wine in living memory, made a spectacular jump from $6250 to $16,893, more than doubling its previous price.

Other early Granges are experiencing spectacular price rises as they become increasingly rare. The 1961, for example, more than tripled in value, from $3262 to $10,486.

Little is known about some of the experimental wines made at Penfolds by Max Schubert and his colleagues in the 1950s and 1960s. A bottle of Bin 80C Magill Dry Red 1954, a wine never before seen at auction, sold for $1748.

The lowest price paid for one of the 2635 bottles in the auction was $12.81 for a bottle of non-vintage Penfolds Club Reserve Aged Tawny (Port).

Langton’s had more than 4000 visitors to its website on the final day of the auction and more than 500 people were bidding when the auction closed at 7pm.

Langton’s is Australia’s most important wine marketplace, hosting more than 250 auctions each year. Auctions close at 9pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays and 7pm on Sundays.

Langton’s also operates an online retail wine business and offers a free personal wine broking service for customers who are time-poor or seeking advice on wine.

While Penfolds is clearly Australia’s leading wine label, Langton’s is also Australia’s home of Burgundy, Bordeaux, Barolo, Chianti - the entire world of fine wine.

If you want to access the latest from Penfolds, rare and back vintage wines or large format and special bottles contact a broker.

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