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1955 Hunter Valley Wine Smashes Auction Expectations



A record $751 was paid for the rare 1955 Lindeman’s Coolalta Vineyard Red Hermitage in the August Wickman’s auction. It was bought by winemaker Iain Riggs on behalf of the internationally renowned Len Evans Tutorial

ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA - September 15th, 2013 -- Iain Riggs, head winemaker at Brokenwood Wines and chairman of trustees for the Len Evans Tutorial, an invitation only annual wine education event held in the Hunter Valley, paid a record price at auction last month to bring an extremely rare and historical Hunter valley wine from the 1950’s to the talented scholars selected for this year's classes.

Each year twelve fully paid scholarships are offered to selected applicants in the wine industry to spend a week in the Hunter Valley tasting the great wines of the world, young and old, in a series of blind tastings, master classes and dinners.

Riggs turned to independent wine auction house, Wickmans, for hard to source old Australian wines, buying not only the 58 year old Lindeman’s Coolalta but also a 1965 McWilliam’s Mount Pleasant OH Hermitage Shiraz, a 1966 Penfolds Bin 426 Shiraz Ouillade and a 1969 Woodley’s Burgundy.

The 1955 Lindeman’s is extremely rare at auction and in this case far exceeded its starting price of $200. Mark Wickman, auctioneer, notes that “the hammer price of $751 has set a benchmark for years to come”.

The Hunter Valley’s Coolalta vineyard, source of the Lindeman’s grapes, was first planted by the Wilkinson family in 1866 and was acquired by Lindeman’s in 1915. It is a steep vineyard which produced both the red Hermitage and a white Burgundy. The vineyard has long held a worldwide reputation for high quality wines, even picking up medals at the Bordeaux Exhibition in the 1880s.

Unsurprisingly, Australian reds this old are increasingly rare and are hotly contested when they appear at auction. Despite their age, they can offer good drinking and this is recognised by not only local connoisseurs but also those from Asia and further afield.

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Notes for Editors:
About The Len Evans Tutorial
Each year the Len Evans Foundation Trustees invite wine scholars to participate in the Len Evans Tutorial. Over a five-day period the 12 scholars are exposed to the great wines of the world, young and old. The Len Evans Foundation Trustees: Brian Croser, James Halliday, Iain Riggs, Basil Sellers.

About Wickmans Wine Auctions
Distinguished by innovation and driven by passion, Wickman’s Fine Wine Auctions has been a lively and profitable meeting ground for wine buyers and sellers since 2003. A family business based in South Australia, Wickman’s prides itself on its position as a reliable resource with a well-spring of extraordinary values and opportunities.
Over the years, Wickman’s has continued to launch unique initiatives in an attempt to set the company apart from traditional online wine auction websites, introducing guaranteed provenance into Australian wine auctions and holding regular wine tasting events and dinners for its members.