Spotlight On Complete Japanese Whisky Sets at Bonhams Hong Kong Sale in May

The international auction house Bonhams presents a Fine and Rare Wine & Whisky Sale on 16 May 2020 in Hong Kong, featuring a group of exceedingly limited Japanese whisky series – most of them complete – from prestigious and newly-trending distilleries such as Yamazaki, Hanyu, Chichibu and Hakushu.

The demand for Japanese whisky is strong with an average of 90% sell-through rate at Bonhams' recent sales. In August 2019, Bonhams set a new world auction record for a Japanese whisky series, as Hanyu Ichiro's Full Card Series sold for HK$7,192,000 to an Asian female collector, nearly doubling the previous record set in 2015, also by Bonhams.

Daniel Lam, Bonhams' Director of Wine & Spirits, Asia, comments: 'Collecting by series is often considered the ultimate pursuit for any dedicated whisky collector. It takes a great deal of time and perseverance to acquire each bottle in the market, and therefore when a set is complete, it brings no less joy than a trophy bottle. It is rare that a full series – especially in the case of Japanese whisky – comes onto the market. But when it does, it holds more value than the individual bottle added together, and will surely be hotly-contested.'

Highlights of Japanese whisky sets include:

Lot 449 A complete set of Suntory 山崎 Yamazaki and 白州 Hakushu Vintage Malt 1st Edition-1979-1994 (16 bottles)
Estimate: HK$600,000 – 800,000

A complete set of first editions in unparalleled condition from two of Suntory's most sought-after distilleries. Hakushu whisky won the award of The World's Best Single Malt in 2019; whereas Yamazaki whisky was also awarded the World's Best Whisky in the 2015 edition of Jim Murray's Whisky Bible.

Lot 475 A complete set of The Ghost Series Japanese Whisky (1st to 12th Edition) (11 bottles)
Estimate: HK$820,000 – 1,100,000

Lot 505 A twin set of Hanyu Ichiro's Malt-Joker 'Monochrome' & 'Colour' (2 bottles)
Estimate: HK$350,000 – $500,000

The largest group of Chichibu whisky ever offered at auction in Asia, among which ten lots will be sold as sets including:
Lot 594 Chichibu-2012-6 year old-#1487-章魚 and Chichibu-2010-8 year old-#646-金魚
Estimate: HK$30,000 – 40,000

Once again, we offer a curated selection of over 50 attractively-estimated Scotch and Japanese whiskies for budding whisky collectors. Ranging from HK$2,500 to HK$15,000, these bottles – all from the most sought-after distilleries – carry estimates lower than the current market price.

Lot 254 Karuizawa-8 year old (bottled 1990's Mercian)
Estimate: HK$4,500 – 6,000
Lot 347 Macallan Speymalt-1973-30 year old
Estimate: HK$13,000 – 18,000
Lot 671 Mars Shinshu-The Lucky Cat set (5 bottles)
Estimate: HK$10,000 – 14,000
Lot 319 Chichibu-2019-#5821-Mount Bukō 武甲山
Estimate: HK$7,000 – 9,000

Other auction highlights include:

Whisky
Lot 635 Karuizawa-1969-50 year old-#539-白命の水
Estimate: HK$360,000 – 450,000
Lot 439 響 Hibiki ceramic-35 year old-人間国宝 三代徳田八十吉作 〈耀彩瓶 碧陽〉
Estimate: HK$180,000 – 240,000
Lot 496 Dalmore-1926-50 year old
Estimate: HK$200,000 – 260,000
Lot 493 Macallan Millennium Decanter
Estimate: HK$340,000 – 400,000
Lot 459 Bowmore-1961-50 year old
Estimate: HK$360,000 – 460,000
Lot 458 Bowmore Queen's Cask-1980-21 year old
Estimate: HK$150,000 – 190,000

Wine
Lot 239 Chambertin, Armand Rousseau, Vertical 1998-2009 (12 bottles)
Estimate: HK$230,000 – 280,000
Lot 114 Scharzhofberger Eiswein 2016, Egon Müller (1 magnum)
Estimate HK$20,000 – 26,000
Chateau d'Yquem in 6 litre format spanning three decades of from 1980's to 2000's, including legendary vintages of 1985, 1989, 1990 and 2001. Estimates range from HK$8,000 to 12,000

At the moment, this sale is planned to be conducted live behind closed doors. An auctioneer will be present on the rostrum, and bids will be accepted in the following formats: online, on the telephone with a member of client services, or by leaving an absentee bid. All bidding will be done remotely in accordance with government guidelines. Our specialists are also working remotely and are available to assist clients by email, telephone or social media platforms.

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