Wine auction is charity, but luxury-style

Wines from more than 60 hectares of prime Burgundy vineyards go up for sale this month for charity in the Hospices de Beaune wine auction.

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The auction sees professionals, connoisseurs and wine lovers gather for a weekend of festivities in the streets and vineyards of the Unesco heritage region of Burgundy and Beaune.

Sunday afternoon sees the auction which features wines from the Hospice estate which has been built up from donations and bequests over 560 years since the first in 1457.

The hospice was a hospital until recently and is a historic monument as well as a work of art. Its vineyards have 85% premier crus and grands crus to make the sale the world’s most famous wine charity auction. Profits go for conservation and medical care.

Buyers arrive from round the world with many others online and already expensive wines hit even higher prices with the climax being the President’s lot that in 2015 saw the 300-bottle barrel of Corton Renardes Grand cru sell for €480,000 (€1,600 a bottle) in a sale that raised €11.3million overall.