(tawdry?) – is that strictly necessary…?


With all the reduced yields in Burgundy, I find it more than a hint tawdry that the Christies marketing machine is pushing ever-harder in China to sell the latest Hospices de Beaune auction wines – particularly given that there is so little 2013 wine to sell. Clearly it is an unnecessary expense whilst times are hard for the many Côte de Beaune producers with little or no wine to sell…

That said, one assumes that Roland Masse is travelling on Christies’ coin, because this is Christies marketing their latest wine auction, and more particularly their own name (in this ‘potentially golden’ territory), it has nothing to do with the Hospices, whose 2013 wines could easily be sold in France alone – it has everything to do, however, with corporations trying to heat-up a market so that we all eventually pay more for a bottle of Beaune. Until that market moves on of-course. But who then, picks up the pieces? Willingly or otherwise, the Hospices are simply being used for Christies’ marketing.


Agree? Disagree? Anything you'd like to add?

There are 3 responses to “(tawdry?) – is that strictly necessary…?”

  1. claude.kolm@gmail.com10th November 2013 at 9:59 pmPermalinkReply

    I expect that Christies is paid on a commission basis, as is the case with other auctions, so of course the more they can knock up the prices, the more money they make. Few corporations will pass up making more money just because someone calls them tawdry for doing so.

    I don’t understand your comment about Côte de Beaune producers, Bill. Yes, the relation between the Hospices prices and prices of regular wines may not be what it once was or was said to be, but still, it doesn’t hurt for Côte de Beaune prices to be high, especially in a vintage where many may be suspicious of Côte de Beaune wines because of the difficult conditions there in 2013.

  2. r.k. stockton10th November 2013 at 9:59 pmPermalinkReply

    Of course that is what Christie’s is doing. It has nothing to do with the Hospices de Beaune. That just gives them another reason to be there. It is all about marketing the Christie’s brand in China.

  3. oliverus11th November 2013 at 6:22 pmPermalinkReply

    I couldn’t agree more with Bill’s comments.
    There is always a pressing and justifiable need for the town of Beaune to earn as much as possible,in order to fund the hospital, but I think it is very dangerous if the auction simply becomes an event for Christies and far off markets to have their fill at the expense of local demand. Geese and golden eggs come to mind.

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