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Laden in Red – Chris de Burgh sells fine wines

February 2, 2011

Chris de Burgh“The Lady in Red” singer Chris de Burgh has decided to cash in on surging prices for fine wines, offering 320 bottles and 84 magnums of mainly red varieties at Christie’s in March which are expected to fetch in the region of 200,000 pounds ($320,000).

“Looking at the economics of the wine trade and how the business of selling wine fluctuates, I decided now was the right time,” he said in a statement. Not surprising — Asian buyers, particularly from China, have piled into the wine market in the last two years sending prices soaring. Christie’s sold wine worth $71.2 million in 2010, a whopping 70 percent increase over 2009, and fellow musician Andrew Lloyd Webber made a cool 3.5 million pounds from a much larger wine sale in Hong Kong last month.

De Burgh, his wife and daughter now prefer drinking white, so parting with some of the world’s finest clarets may be easier to bear.

Among the highlights from de Burgh’s temperature-controlled wine room at his home in Ireland is a 12 bottle case of Château Lafite-Rothschild, vintage 1945, estimated to fetch 12-16,000 pounds. (How much that works out per sip I’m not sure, but per glass it’s around 220 pounds). The bottles are still in the original straw which protected them since the end of World War Two. “Considering the dramatic events that were unfolding across Europe and particularly in France at that time, it’s extraordinary that one of the finest wines of the century was made then,” de Burgh said.

The highest value lot is a vertical collection of 62 magnums of Château Mouton-Rothschild, vintages 1945-2005, expected to sell for 70-90,000 pounds.

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