French presidential wine auction raises 300,000 euros on first day

Chateau Pétrus 1982 and 1990
Chateau Pétrus 1982 and 1990 Reuters

The auction of wine from the French president’s cellar raised even more than expected on its first day, Thursday, with a total take of 295,663 euros. And there’s more to come – the sale continues Friday.


The highest price paid was 5,800 euros for a 1990 Pétrus, from the famous Bordeaux château, which had been given a pre-sale estimate of 2,200-2,500 euros.

It went to Shanghai wine importer Fan Dongxing, who had already bought half the bottles of Cognac on offer.

Another bottle of 1990 Pétrus went for 5,500 euros.

“I’m very happy,” Fan told the press. “The Chinese love French wine.”

Most of the most prestigious wines were sold on Thursday, including another Bordeaux, a 1961 Château d’Angelus, estimated at 220 euros and sold for 1,100 euros, and the oldest bottle on sale, also a Bordeaux, a 1936 Château Latour, fetched 3,500 euros.

The bottles, which are stocked in a cellar near RFI’s offices in Issy-les-Moulineaux, just outside Paris, were not on show at the sale to avoid disturbing them unnecessarily.

Thursday’s takings of 295,663 euros even surprised the organisers, who say they expected to make 250,000 euros from the whole sale.

Opponents of gay marriage demonstrated outside the Drouot auction house as the sale started, shouting “We want jobs, not gay marriage!”

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