The H.B. Harris, Jr. Collection Brings $7.5 Million

The H.B. Harris, Jr. Collection Brings $7.5 Million

Hart Davis Hart, America’s #1 Wine Auction House in 2012 and 2013, opened 2014 with a blockbuster auction, selling 100% of lots offered and posting $7.5 million in sales. A remarkable sale, the Harris collection shattered a pre-auction estimate of $4-$6 million, with more than 80% of lots smashing high estimates.

These incredible results were undoubtedly due to the special nature of this single-owner sale, which showcased the impeccable collection of the late H.B. Harris, Jr. From the long list of 1985 Burgundies to the historic vintages of Bordeaux and Champagne, bidders eagerly vied over the wines of Mr. Harris’s cellar, offering remarkably competitive bids for these well-preserved treasures.

As Chairman John Hart noted, “intact cellars of this caliber are growing increasingly scarce, and it’s always thrilling to be a part of them. The overwhelming response generated by this sale shows how highly collectors value the provenance that comes with a single-owner sale.”

Unparalleled quantities of finest and rarest wines yielded phenomenal results, with Burgundy legends Jayer, DRC, Ponsot and Leroy continuing to dominate the market. The Domaine de la Romanée-Conti claimed 5 of the top 10 lots of the day, with a rare case of its 1976 Romanée-Conti selling for an astounding $101,575 against an estimate of $50,000-$75,000, and an even rarer jeroboam (3L) of 1971 Romanée-Conti hammering at $77,675 (est. $30,000-45,000). Not to be outdone, a six bottle case of Henri Jayer’s 1985 Richebourg ultimately claimed the top lot of the day, selling for a breathtaking $113,525.00.

The auction, which was held at Chicago’s award-winning Tru Restaurant, saw feverish participation from collectors worldwide. Attendees filled the auction room to near capacity, competing vigorously with absentee bidders from 39 states, as well as 15 countries spanning 5 continents. Bidders on the floor were fortunate enough to sample gems from the Harris cellar throughout the sale, including a luscious, full-bodied Jeroboam of 1961 Pichon Lalande and a beautifully complex 1985 La Tâche.

“This was an extraordinary collection to have been involved with, and we’ve been honored to assist in bringing it to the market,” remarked President Ben Nelson. “We’re ecstatic with today’s results and we’re looking forward to continuing this momentum throughout the year.”

Hart Davis Hart’s next sale will take place the weekend of March 22nd and will feature a stunning selection of DRC, top Bordeaux, and California cult favorites including Screaming Eagle, Sine Qua Non and Schrader.

Top Lots of 2013 (inclusive of 19.5% buyer’s premium):
Lot 558: 1985 Richebourg, Henri Jayer (6 bs) (est. $48,000-75,000) $113,525
Lot 297: 1976 Romanée-Conti, DRC (12 bs) (est. $50,000-75,000) $101,575
Lot 562: 1985 Vosne-Romanée, Cros Parantoux, Henri Jayer (6 bs) (est. $30,000-45,000) $101,575
Lot 293: 1971 Romanée-Conti, DRC (1 jeroboam (3L)) (owc) (est. $30,000-45,000) $77,675
Lot 298: 1976 Romanée-Conti, DRC (4 mags) (est. $35,000-55,000) $77,675
Lot 307: 1971 La Tâche, DRC (6 mags) (est. $35,000-55,000) $71,700
Lot 822: 1985 Clos de la Roche, Vieilles Vignes, Domaine Ponsot (6 mags) (est. $30,000-45,000) $71,700
Lot 821: 1985 Clos de la Roche, Vieilles Vignes, Domaine Ponsot (12 bs) (est. $26,000-38,000) $65,725
Lot 306: 1971 La Tâche, DRC (12 bs) (est. $28,000-42,000) $59,750
Lot 560: 1985 Vosne-Romanée, Brûlées, Henri Jayer (12 bs) (est. $32,000-48,000) $59,750

Sale Stats: Percent sold by lot: 100% | Total Aggregate: $7,552,257
Low Pre-Sale Estimate: $4,003,590 | High Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,965,930

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