Collecting wine is a genuine pleasure because you can savour what you collect. What also keeps it interesting is that every year rare labels are auctioned, as new harvests from vineyards promise great potential. This gives you the opportunity to continuously learn about different labels, years and meet collectors from around the world.
While auctions are a great place to start, it is important that you bid only at reliable auction houses. Christie’s and Sotheby’s are well-known, and as wine-collecting becomes more and more popular, there are also new auction companies offering a variety of labels and diverse services.
We asked Spectrum Wine Auctions, one of the world's newest online auction houses, for some tips on how to start a personal wine collection. Here is what Director of Client Services, Amanda Keston, suggested...
What advice do you have for a wine lover who wants to get into collecting?
The only way to start a collection is to jump in and start putting together your wine cellar. I recommend collecting what you like to drink and to be sure to enjoy some of the bottles from your collection. Wine lots perform best in quantities of 6 or 12, so if you purchase a full case of wine you can drink half of the bottles and still get a good return on your investment.
How do I find out how much potential a certain label will have?
There is a small number of well-established high-end labels. If you are a new collector and want to find a new label before it becomes an established brand, I suggest you find a type of wine that you like and focus on that. That way, even if your wine may not reach the potential you feel it deserves, you will still be able to enjoy it.
What is the recent trend of Chinese customers bidding in wine auctions?
One of the reasons why we moved our auctions from California to Hong Kong is because we have many Chinese customers. Chinese buyers are more or less dictating the current wine market. When wine import duties were lifted in Hong Kong in 2008, there was a fast rate of growth, making China a major hub for world-class wine.
Spectrum Wine Auctions is one of the world’s newest live and online auction houses of fine collectible wine. Their fine and rare bottlings are reserved for the live auctions held in Hong Kong, while partial cases or more commonly found vintages are offered via their online auctions
Spectrum's next live auction will take place on 25th – 26th June 2011 at The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong. So whether you are already a collector or are just starting to get into collecting, contact Spectrum Wine Auctions for more information. www.spectrumwine.com