The 162nd edition of the annual Hospices de Beaune wine sale on November 20 will present a total of 51 different cuvées of the 2022 vintage produced from vineyards across the Hospices’ 60-hectare holdings, now in its second year of organic conversion, making it one of the largest ever offerings in the history of the auction, says Sotheby’s in a press release.
These 51 cuvées will be divided into 802 lots: 620 barrels of red wines and 182 barrels of white wines. This year’s offering will include two new cuvées: Corton Grand Cru cuvée Les Renardes and Beaune 1er cru Clos des mouches cuvée Hugues et Louis Bétault.
For its 162nd sale, the Hospices de Beaune will pay tribute to the late Louis-Fabrice Latour – the head of Burgundy négociant Maison Louis Latour, a leading figure in Burgundy and a loyal supporter of the auction who sadly passed away in September – with a unique charity piece, a barrel of a Corton grand cru from the hill of Corton.
The proceeds from the sale of this special Charity barrel, also known as the Pièce des Présidents (Presidents’ barrel), will support two organizations: the Princesse Margot association, which supports children with cancer, and the World Vision organization, whose mission is to help the most vulnerable children.
For the Presidents’ barrel, the Hospices de Beaune has selected a part of its Corton Grand Cru Rouge production for a blend of three of the domaine’s most beautiful terroirs (Corton Renardes, Corton Bressandes and Corton Chaume). Both the wine and its container are unique: the wine is currently being housed in a special 228-litre barrel made by the tonellerie of the Maison Louis Latour, in which it will continue to mature. The Hospices de Beaune and the Maison Louis Latour were keen to ensure that it was faithful in every respect to the traditional methods practiced and held dear by Louis-Fabrice Latour.
François Poher, Director and Chairman of the Board of Hospices Civils de Beaune, said: “In 2023, the main theme of the Hospices Civils de Beaune will be hospitality. This translates into a more human commitment in all our activities, for example, a more personal welcome in the hospital and on the telephone, in the wards and in the emergency room, which will be completely changed by March 2023.
“Our vocation is to combine health and the environment, and the winery is committed to organic conversion. We are a hospital and we care for the health of those who work in the vineyards, those who live around the vineyards and the health of our consumers. We are committed to continually improving the conditions in which we welcome our visitors and buyers to the winery, particularly in preparation for the 162nd wine sale. And looking ahead to next year, for the first time the Hôtel Dieu museum will offer a cultural program based on this major theme of the institution, including an exhibition of photographs retracing the history of the hospital sisters and numerous events such as a night at the museum.”
Speaking of the 2022 vintage, Ludivine Griveau, Manager of the Hospices de Beaune wine estate, described the whites to have “a beautiful aromatic potential” and the reds being silky.
“To date, the whites of the 2022 vintage reveal a beautiful aromatic potential, with aromas of yellow fruit and a hint of aniseed. Our harvest date was optimal and allowed us to obtain a good balance between maturity and freshness. A cold maceration of the Pinot Noir grapes allowed us to extract beautiful dark ruby colours and intense aromas of black fruits. Silkiness is the key word of the 33 reds we have produced. Overall, this is a vintage with a thousand facets that once again allows each terroir to reveal its identity and will leave buyers with much to choose from,” she explains.
The last auction raised a total of €12.6 million and a record price for the Presidents’ Piece, which was sold for €800,000 despite it being the smallest auction since 1977.
Amayès Aouli, Head of Auction Sales for Continental Europe, Sotheby’s Wine, said: “It is a great honor to work with Hospices de Beaune to organize the 162nd wine sale. Last year’s sale saw the smallest number of lots offered since 1977, but the size of the vintage did nothing to dampen the appetite of the buyers who turned out in force. For the 162nd edition, our program is just as ambitious, if not more so, as we turn a spotlight on the quality of the wines produced by Ludivine Griveau and her team, and the wonderful 2022 vintage. Since her first vintage in 2015, Ludivine has transformed both the winemaking and viticulture of the Hospices de Beaune estate, achieving spectacular results. And now that the estate is undergoing organic certification, the sky is the limit in the years to come.”