The record-setting wine, Fourmeaux 2017, sold for $85,250 or $710 per bottle (and $8525 per case). The auction was held at Louis M. Martini Winery.
The Bordeaux-style red wine is named after VGS Chateau Potelle proprietor Jean-Noel Fourmeaux. Fourmeaux, who hails from France, founded the winery in 1980 and has been overseeing the production of small-batch, Bordeaux-style wines since then.
“Art is evolutionary, winemaking is, too,” he said when asked about the winning barrel-auction price. “These wines bear my name. They are what I have learned during my life and what I have become. They represent maturity and wisdom, and as well as presence and dimension. [They are] a culmination of my decades-old love affair with wine and life.”
The Fourmeaux 2017 is a highly concentrated, rich, and not overly tannic wine from grapes grown atop Mount Veeder at an elevation of about 2,000 feet. VGS Chateau Potelle produced only 170 cases—10 of which were accounted for in the winning barrel. The wine itself was aged for 20 months in new French oak, and it comprises a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (97 percent), and Malbec (3 percent). The wine is made from the only grapes they were able to harvest on Mount Veeder in 2017 because of the wildfires.
Fourmeaux 2017 was crafted by Kale Anderson, the youngest American winemaker ever awarded a perfect 100 points by wine critic Robert Parker.
“The 2017 vintage was very challenging,” said Anderson. “To achieve a wine of this quality is really humbling and I’m grateful it was so well received.”
To say this wine appealed is an understatement; the impressive price surpassed the second highest barrel lot by $38,250.
The high bidders on the Fourmeaux wine were Bruce and Jennifer Adams from Louisiana. Bruce Adams said he was delighted to play a small part in such an important event. “To contribute to the continued success of the Fourmeaux luxury brand is a pleasure and it serves a great cause, not to mention the wine is really spectacular.”
This year marked the 39th annual Auction Napa Valley. Following the conclusion of the event proceeds from the live auction, barrel auction and e-auction will be distributed to support 28 Napa County charities in children’s education and community health. The 2019 event is expected to raise $12 million
As for Fourmeaux 2017, it will be available by allocation only from VGS Chateau Potelle. For more information about the wine or to request an allocation, please visit www.vgschateaupotelle.com.