Stormy Napa Auction Raises 7.3 Million DollarsJune 6, 2011
This year’s Auction Napa Valley raised a cool (and soggy) $5.8 million at Saturday’s live auction, the culmination of four days of events that raised $7.3 million. Not bad, considering the unseasonable torrent of rain and wind that hit Meadowood Resort in St. Helena during Saturday’s bidding. Rather than dwell on the weather or fret that this year’s take was $1 million shy of the 2010 total, vintners celebrated a milestone—passing the $100 million mark during the event’s 31-year history of raising money for local healthcare, youth services and affordable housing programs.
The atmosphere Saturday was more laid back and casual than usual, as the 800 guests seemed to accept the unusual weather and have jest with it. Stylish skirts were matched with wading boots and slickers replaced sport coats. “This is the one year where you really feel like drinking Cabernet,” said vintner Tor Kenward, alluding to previous auctions when temperatures regularly reached the high 90s.
The top money-raising lot was from the Staglin and Chiarello families, which raised a total of $600,000 ($300,000 from two separate bidders) for a three-day Napa excursion for six that includes cooking lessons with chef Michael Chiarello and seven large-format bottles of wine. The day’s top single-bid was $180,000 for the Opus One lot, purchased by Aria Mehrabi of Florida. It included an eight-day tour of China for six, including dinner inside the Forbidden City, airfare, lodging, meals and an eight-magnum collection of wine.
Two other lots also doubled their money by offering a duplicate of the winning bid to a second bidder. Chappellet Vineyard raised a total of $400,000 for a seven-day California excursion and a three bottle 3-liter collection of Pritchard Hill Estate 2009. Bond took in $240,000 for a dinner party at the winery, a wine-and-food pairing class and a five-bottle 3-liter collection of 2007 wines.
Dan Cristall, an investment banker from Calgary, and his wife, Lindsay, won the final lot of the night, paying $140,000 for a package put together by the Napa Valley Vintners. It included a nine-day food and wine holiday to Maui and Deer Valley, Utah, with transportation by private jet, custom-made clothing, jewelry and timepieces and a 20-bottle collection of magnums from various Napa wineries. For more on the auction, go to winespectator.com.
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Tagged : auctions, Napa Valley, wine
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