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August 31, 2011

Rare 100-Year-Old Moët et Chandon Goes on the Christie's Auction Block

By Rachel Wolff | auctions

Champagne supernova. Courtesy of Moët et Chandon.

Ever since 2008, when Hong Kong eliminated its 40 percent sales tax on wine, the region has become home to some of the world's most important fine wine auctions. Demand for wine has soared, especially from within Mainland China's newly moneyed class. "When people are successful, they want to enjoy the fruits of their success," says Charles Curtis, head of wine in Asia at Christie's. "The Chinese have come to see fine wine as part of that." It's unsurprising, then, that Christie's now regularly reserves some of its most exclusive lots for its Far East auctions. Standout offerings at the house's September 3 and 4 Hong Kong sales include an exceedingly rare (not to mention highly drinkable) case of 1911 Moët et Chandon Champagne, heading to the auction block directly from the winery itself. The six bottles, which come packaged in a black leather Louis Vuitton case, are expected to sell for about $55,000. Starstruck imbibers, up your bid: The lot also includes lunch with Moët's fetching spokesperson, the one and only Scarlett Johansson. christies.com/departments/wine.

RSVP: Don't miss the Departures Asian art auction at Sotheby's, in New York, on September 13