ZACHYS ANNOUNCES WORLD RECORD-BREAKING DEBUT EUROPEAN AUCTION OF WINES FROM THE CELLAR OF ENOTECA PINCHORRI TOTALLING £3.2 MILLION

After decades of auctions in New York and Hong Kong, the world’s leading wine auction house, Zachys, hosted its first European auction in London via livestream, on 12 September 2020. In a great success by any measure, the auction was sold out and realized £3,153,952. The wines and aquavit in the auction were from the legendary cellar of three-Michelin-star Enoteca Pinchiorri in Florence, Italy. The sale included Coche-Dury, Rouget, Dujac, Ramonet, Leflaive, Jayer, Liger-Belair, DRC, the First Growths, Pétrus back to the 1920s, Le Pin, Yquem back to the 1920s, Masseto, Ornellaia, Krug, Chave, an amazing collection of Italian aquavit in beautiful hand-blown Murano glass, all curated by the restaurant’s owner Giorgio Pinchiorri. The auction was live-streamed from Zachys’ home office in New York, by Zachys President Jeff Zacharia and Head of Auction Sales Charles Antin, while bidders logged in from home, along with intimate get-togethers in Stockholm, Geneva, Beijing and at Cabotte Wine Bar and Restaurant in London. Bidders from 20 countries, including the UK, US, UAE, China, Hong Kong, Israel, Switzerland, Sweden and Monaco, all vied to take home a piece of vinous history. The 864-lot auction featured 2,507 large formats including nebuchadnezzars, methuselahs, jeroboams, magnums and was 100% sold. 26% of the auction, or 226 of the lots, set new World Records, and an astonishing 55% of the lots set European Records, despite this being Zachys first auction in the UK. The top World Records include:

• A single magnum of 1979 Jayer Richebourg for £47,120

• A single magnum of 1990 Roumier Musigny for £47,120

• A single imperial of 2009 Pétrus for £42,160

• A single bottle of 1985 Jayer Richebourg for £34,720

• A single methuselah of 1981 DRC RSV for £29,760 Zachys sold over £115 million worth of wine at auction and retail in 2019.

In March 2020, as Covid-19 forced bidders to stay at home, Zachys quickly transformed into a digital business and was the first major auction house to offer its live auctions fully online, allowing clients to bid from anywhere globally. Despite COVID-19, Zachys has had its busiest first half-year ever, overreaching projections with over £34 million in year-to-date auction sales. Since the start of the pandemic, all live auctions have taken place through Zachys’ “Studio Sales” live-streamed, sometimes with over 150 people in the “virtual room,” watching the auctioneer from New York. Zachys even carried out a Hong Kong sale on EST, which took place 10pm-4am. Zachys’ global team hosts now-famous bidding parties, where potential buyers in Beijing, Shanghai, Stockholm, London, Hong Kong, or elsewhere can get together in small groups, enjoy a glass of Burgundy, some fine dining, and bid in real-time. The “Studio Sales” have made Zachys auctions more accessible as bidders are no longer required to attend in person. Zachys has offices in New York, Los Angeles, Napa, Washington DC, Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Stockholm and Paris. London, the historic centre of wine buying and trading worldwide, was the obvious choice for Zachys’ new European hub. Zachys’ presence in the UK capital is a key piece in a global expansion strategy that ensures the company’s global clientele will receive the same level of service regardless of time zone. Christy Erickson, Head of Europe, Zachys said: “We’re delighted with the results of our European debut. We were coming into the auction against a backdrop of global uncertainty due to the ongoing pandemic, but since wine auction sales in 2020 thus far have exceeded our January projections, we decided to forge ahead. And we’re glad we did: this auction shows that the fine-wine auction industry is still booming, and our buyers’ appetite for quality shows no sign of slowing. We’re thrilled to have set a 226 World Records and achieve over double our pre-auction estimate for this collection. We can now look forward to three more sales in New York and Hong Kong in September, three auctions in New York in October, and then we’re back in November for our second sale in London.’’ In addition to its upcoming auctions in New York and Hong Kong, Zachys will follow up the London auction with a multi-vendor sale in the city in November 2020. Visit the auction calendar here: http://www.zachys.com/auctions.

WOMEN IN WINE TALKS Announces an exclusive “Live Talk” with Albiera Antinori – Tenuta Guado al Tasso and Priscilla Incisa della Rocchetta – Tenuta San Guido

WOMEN IN WINE TALKS

hosted by

Liz Palmer, President – Les Dames d’Escoffier (Ontario Chapter)

 

It is our great pleasure to invite you to be part of an exclusive “live talk” with

Albiera Antinori – Tenuta Guado al Tasso

and

Priscilla Incisa della Rocchetta – Tenuta San Guido
Bolgheri, Tuscany, Italy

 

This event is scheduled for

Monday, September 21st at 7 pm (Rome time) on Zoom Platform  

Shari Mogk-Edwards (Canada) and Filippo Magnani (Bolgheri) will modulate the discussions between Albiera Antinori and Priscilla Incisa della Rocchetta. You will learn about the amazing story of their families, the Bolgheri territory, and its wines.  This is not to be missed!

 Albiera and Priscilla, two women representing two historical and renowned Italian wine estates in Bolgheri, producing the iconic wines Guado al Tasso and Sassicaia. Nowadays, these two women together with Cinzia Merli from Le Macchiole winery, are also guiding the direction of the Board of Consorzio DOC Bolgheri and will discuss the vision of this wine appellation and territory.

Filippo Magnani, one of the top global Italian wine travel experts in Italy, will provide an overview of Bolgheri as “the hidden gem of Tuscany”, and why Bolgheri should be the next wine destination for both wine enthusiasts and wine professionals.

Host and Organizer:

Liz Palmer – President of Les Dames d’Escoffier (Ontario Chapter), Award-winning author, Dame Chevalier de Coteaux de Champagne, Educator, Wine Judge and voted one of the “Top 20 Global Wine Influencers for 2020 “ and founder of UPSocial Wine and Spirits Agency www.liz-palmer.com

Speakers from Bolgheri:

Albiera Antinori – Owner of Tenuta Guado al Tasso in Bolgheri / President of Consorzio DOC Bolgheri Tuscany / Member of the Association Le Donne del vino in Italy  (The Women of Wine of Italy) www.guadoaltasso.it  

Priscilla Incisa della Rocchetta – Co-owner of Tenuta San Guido in Bolgheri / Vice-President of Consorzio DOC Bolgheri Tuscany / Member of the Association Le Donne del vino in Italy  (The Women of Wine of Italy). www.tenutasanguido.com

Moderators:                                    

Shari Mogk-Edwards is the founder of Shari’s Picks Consulting. Her career spans 36 years with the world’s largest single buyer of beverage alcohol – the Liquor Control Board of Ontario. As a former VP and head buyer at LCBO, Shari Mogk-Edwards tasted and selected wines and spirits from around the world. She developed Shari’s Picks and now makes wine recommendations. www.sharispicks.ca

Filippo Magnani – Wine Travel Expert in Italy and Writer  (The Italian Wine Insider). In 1999 he founded Fufluns Wine Tours, a boutique travel operator specialized in Wine Tours in Tuscany & Italy. www.filippomagnani.itwww.fufluns.com


Zoom link to join the Women in Wine Talk 7 PM (Rome)
on
Monday, September 21st 

[complimentary ticket] Click here for your complimentary ticket!

Eventbrite Page:

https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/women-in-wine-talks-with-albiera-antinori-priscilla-incisa-della-rocchetta-tickets-120133780371

We look forward to seeing you.

With warm regards,

Liz Palmer
Founder of Women in Wine Talks
President of Ontario Chapter Les Dames d’Escoffier

 

Milano Wine Week Goes Digital – October 3 – 11 2020

Milano Wine Week will represent the first international wine event since the global Covid-19 shutdown. This year the organizers have set up a series of food and wine pairing demonstrations with top Italian chefs, for both trade and consumers that focuses on wine providing the inspiration for the dish – this online event will take place at a test kitchen near the Piazza del Duomo.

Milan Wine Week 2020 will be focusing on experiential events that connect with wine consumers, rather than a wine fair with booths. The organizers are also setting up small wine worlds within the popular neighborhoods in Milan; one neighborhood will focus on Franciacorta wines while another will focus on Prosecco wines, i.e., each neighborhood will have wine bars and restaurants focusing on that specific wine area. Each neighborhood will become a particular wine consorzio (association).

For trade and media, there will be a series of masterclasses and wine tastings as well as seminars that will not only focus on advice, guidance and networking opportunities but it will speak about exploring opportunities in a post-Covid world while all events will honor rules and government guidelines for avoiding the spread of the virus.

Milan Wine Week an international event and for 2020 they have upped their digital game by having events taking place in ten key cities: New York, San Francisco, Miami, Toronto, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing, Moscow, Munich and London that will be linked live to events taking place in Milan such as a winemaker leading a tasting and connecting live to other international cities via the internet.

Last year, Milan Wine Week attracted over 300,000 attendees across 300 event spaces in the northern Italian city.

“When our reality changes we need to change accordingly. Milano Wine Week has risen to the challenge by turning a gap into an opportunity,” Federico Gordini, Fonder of Milano Wine Week states

“During the lockdown, we decided to reimagine and adjust our business model in order to create something that was revolutionary and suitable for these times, trying to achieve an even bigger endeavor at an international level, while complying with strict regulations,” he added.

The week-long event will also gather opinion leaders, international professionals and consumers, and will include seminars, masterclasses, tastings and forums exploring everything from millennial drinking habits to wine retail trends.

“We will act as a broadcaster streaming a series of programs that can be accessed in real-time around the world. For the first time in our history we have decided to create a common thread connecting all the events in our schedule,” Gordini said.

Pre-registration : https://www.milanowineweek.com/digital-wine-fair-pre-registration/

2020 CMA [Canadian Marketing Association] Awards – Judging Commences Today

I’m thrilled to participate as a Judge in this year’s CMA Awards in the Business Impact Discipline.

2020 shows another record number of entries. Judging commences today across six disciplines: brand building, business impact, customer experience, engagement, innovative media and martech. Within each discipline, entries compete with campaigns in one of nine categories (automotive, business, consumer products, consumer services, financial, food & beverage, health care, retail and social causes). In addition, nominations are accepted for Marketer of the Year and Lifetime Achievement Award, and a select panel of judges select the Top Cause and Best of the Best winners, from the top entries across their respective disciplines and categories.

This November, the CMA Awards Gala will be virtual. The marketing community loves to celebrate. Stay tuned for further details!

Good luck to everyone !

Champagne popping out of Covid-19 – Liz Palmer’s Presentation – Sparkling WINE Week July 1 2020

Sparkling WINE Week – July 1st 2020
Champagne Post COVID –
Session 3 – 15.30 – 16.00 Seminar: Champagne popping out of COVID-19  – Sparkling WINE Week Liz Palmer, Key Note Speaker

 Champagne Popping Out Of Covid-19

 Remember …only sparkling wine, from the Champagne region of France, can be called “Champagne”.

Brief Overview Of The Region

Location: the Champagne Region is located in the Northeastern part of France, about 1h30 from Paris by car and 45 minutes by TGV (high-speed train).

 Districts: The viticultural boundaries of Champagne are legally defined and split into 5 wine-producing districts: Aube, Côte des Blancs, Côte de Sézanne, Montagne de Reims, and Vallée de la Marne. The towns of Reims and Épernay are the commercial centers of the area. Reims is famous for its cathedral, Notre-Dame de Reims – this was previously used for the coronation of the French Kings and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Grapes: Three grapes are mainly used – Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Meunier.

Other approved varietals include: Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Arbane, and Petit Meslier

  • These together are less than 0.3% of plantings.

31% of vineyards in Champagne are planted with Chardonnay which performs best on the Côtes des Blancs and on the chalk-slopes south of Epernay. Chardonnay produces lighter, fresher wines and gives finesse, fruit and elegance to the final blend. It is the sole grape used in Blancs de Blancs.  Note:  No other authorized white grapes, i.e., Pinot Blanc, Arbane, Petit-Meslier and Pinot Gris can be used in making a Blancs de Blancs.

Pinot Noir accounts for nearly 38% of the plantings in Champagne and lies at the heart of most blends – it gives Champagne its body, structure, strength and grip. It is planted across Champagne and in the Aube district.

The final varietal is Meunier which accounts for nearly 31% of the plantings. This varietal is durable and resistant to spring frosts – found in Marne Valley. It produces a soft, fruity style of wine that is ideal for blending with the more assertive flavours of Pinot Noir. Producers allege that Pinot Meunier lacks aging potential, but this does not deter Krug from including 15% of it in their final blends.

Champagne is a collective of over 16,000 growers and 340 houses. The region as a whole has put a proactive focus on climate change and sustainability since 2003 it was the first in the world to produce a carbon footprint assessment and identify the main sources of emissions in their systems. Based on learnings from the assessment, the region rolled out a plan to cut emissions by 75% by 2050. A nearer-term goal ensures that 100% of the area holds an environmental certification by 2030. (As of 2019, about a fifth of the region held a certification.)

Champagne Shipments

The latest shipment figures are attached [as at April 20, 2020] « too early to tell the effects » since 50% of the shipments occur between September – December 2019, the next figures are expected to be announced around the 10th/15th of July – so watch for this – usually published in French.

Going back to 2019 – Champagne reached its highest ever turnover, breaking the €5 billion mark for the first time in its history, while the start of this year was also very strong in terms of sales of the sparkling wine. The beginning of 2020 was good in terms of consumption – and now it’s a different story.

2020 Pandemic 

With gatherings over the past three months across large parts of Europe, and around the world, canceled or postponed, and bars and restaurants closed, it should come as little surprise that Champagne sales would be seriously affected, especially as the nation’s worst-hit by the pandemic are some of Champagne’s biggest markets: France, Italy, Spain, and the USA.

As a whole, the Champagne region immediately reacted when the W.H.O. declared a global health emergency with the coronavirus pandemic [January 30, 2020].  France announced the first coronavirus death in Europe [February 14, 2020].

What Initial Steps Were Taken? 

  • Adapted general safety measures in the vineyards and cellars, and made the continuation of the work possible.
  • established guidelines for « mating confusion » which usually is done by hand in large groups (the whole village at once).

What is mating confusion:  This technique is based on a natural insect (scent or aroma) pheromone which confuses a male butterfly into not mating with the female. If the insects don’t breed, they aren’t a threat to the vines – this is called sexual confusion.

Mating confusion was postponed a few times and eventually suspended and did not take place in many villages. Typically, the growers would rather take the risk to lose a percentage of their grapes to the insects, than giving up on a « biocontrol  – which is a component of an integrated pest management strategy. It is defined as the reduction of pest populations by natural enemies.

[Note: Champagne is the leading European country, in terms of surface, when it comes to mating confusion and half of their surfaces are under mating confusion].

  • During this time, the Comite Champagne reminded the growers and houses, of the strategic orientations of the region: growth in value rather than in volume.
  • During the crisis, the Champagne Region interacted with the French government, to ensure that economic measures were in place to support the domaines and wineries.
  • The Presidents and executive board members of the houses have clearly communicated that Champagne expects a fall of shipments by 100 million bottles (i.e. minus 30% to minus 35%) over the year, resulting in a loss of turnover of 1,7 Bn€.
  • During the months of April and May, Champagne has managed to establish an “adaptation” of the collective system which is aimed at ensuring the survival of the houses and companies, such as:The 2020 harvest will be bottled in two parts:

the first part, as usual, January 1st 2021;

with the second part to be bottled as of January 1st 2022

(ensuring that there is a reasonable level of production in 2020 (in order to sustain domaines and all players, who depend on selling grapes). This avoids providing the markets with too much wine.).

[Note: Currently there are almost 4 years of shipments in stock (or 1,43 Bn bottles)]

  • The French government was solicited to reinforce the “Loi EGalim” or “**EGalim Law”] in the French off-trade, because it has had, in the past, positive effects on the Champagne market overall by limiting extreme discounts.

**[in long form this represents – law for the balance of trade relations in the agricultural and food sector and healthy, sustainable, and accessible food for all].

  • The EGalim Law set recent promotions as follows: 1 bottle offered for 3 purchased, as opposed to « buy one get one free ».

[Note: This call to the government is a positive sign on Champagne being firm on its value growth strategy.] 

Increased Digital Activities

  • The growers, houses and the Comite Champagne have all changed the way they communicate including increasing their social media activities.
  • recently launched Champagne education platform [Mook] champagne-mooc.com.

Classic Version

Course in English with subtitled videos

Access to 4 educational modules

The Champagne making process

The Champagne terroir

History and Economy of Champagne

Diversity and Tasting

Free

A N D 

Premium Version

Course in English with subtitled videos

Access to the 4 educational modules of the classic version

Additionnal contents:

Extra videos

Test your knowledge

Get the official Statement of completion

49€ (taxes included)

Strategy – Post-COVID

  • The main driver to rebuild a « desire for Champagne » is to collectively build the visibility of Champagne as a region that has invested in an eco-friendly production management [this is a number one concern for consumers 25-35 years in many key markets] and Champagne as the drink for celebrations, and special moments, but also the drink to make moments special — Champagne as a treat during hard times, a break within the rush, a comforting drink, for some.
  • And as Louis Roederer’s cellar master Jean-Baptiste Lecaillon states “We make something which is not essential but, at the same time, it is essential for pleasure and bringing people together. We make a wine for celebration, so we decided that, in difficult times, it is important to do what we do and try and make an even better wine for the future.”
  • Some brands, including the Union of Growers have organized charities to support medical teams in the region.
  • The environmental effort of the region (previously mentioned), for the last 20 years and with objectives set for 2025, 2030, 2050, these strategic fundamentals are long-term.

Harvest 2020 

  • There was initially a challenge to get seasonal workers for the upcoming harvest above at least 50% of the 120,000 required. With most coming from Eastern Europe, it’s both a challenge to determine how and when they can travel to France, and then to implement social distancing which anticipated for the end of August. This is no longer an issue as the UE will be reopening and students will be available.  The challenge remains to implement social distancing.
  • This is a manual and collective task that can cause incredible logistic challenges (transportation and meals).

Champagne Tourism

  • When it comes to tourism the region has adapted the government guidelines to reopen and the sites have just started to open.

France is Europe’s most-visited country, making tourism a key pillar of the economy.

  • Experts say it’s too early to evaluate the full effect of the COVID-19 crisis, but the European Commission is already calling for a new “Marshall Plan,” using EU funds, to save the tourism industry.
  • Once the lockdowns are fully over, and plans for a vaccine are in place, we will all want to celebrate – with Champagne of course!

Sources:

Comite Champagne
Thibaut Le Mailloux
Jean-Baptiste Lecaillon

 

 

Liz Palmer

liz@liz-palmer

www.liz-palmer.com