By Jim Boyce
Sotheby’s has announced it will auction off the wine cellar of restaurant elBulli — with a pre-sale estimated value of rmb7 million to rmb10 million, not including buyer’s premium — in both Hong Kong and New York. If you told people five years ago that a) elBulli would close in 2011 and b) that Hong Kong would by that time be a fine wine auction hub, they likely would have handed you a glass of sangria jelly or, if things got hostile, reduced you to a foam.
From Sotheby’s (my highlights):
On 3 April 2013 in Hong Kong and 26 April 2013 in New York, Sotheby’s will offer wines from the cellar of the celebrated Catalan restaurant that closed last year. Founded over 50 years ago in 1961, elBulli was led by Ferran Adrià for the last 27 years.
Over the two sales, 8,807 bottles will be offered, with proceeds benefiting the elBulliFoundation, which will focus its activity on ‘Creativity.’
The auction will include first growths from Bordeaux as well as heavy hitters from Burgundy (Romanée Conti), Spain (Vega Sicilia) and elsewhere. This one should draw a crowd, assuming the world doesn’t end on December 21. Get more details on the auction here.
(Unlike in the English-only press release, I noticed that the bilingual email I received from Hong Kong mentioned twice, in the first two paragraphs, that elBulli was a three-star Michelin restaurant. Not saying it means anything, just that it stuck out.)