Charlie Trotter’s Wine Up for Auction

November 14, 2012 | by —Elle Eichinger
Photography by CHRISTIE'S IMAGES LTD. 2012 | Homepage

Charlie Trotter is pictured with his wine cellar, which will go up for grabs this month.

Chicago collectively sighed in sadness when chef Charlie Trotter shuttered his legendary eponymous restaurant in August, but there is a silver lining. Starting November 20, Christie’s New York will put more than 400 bottles of wine from the restaurant’s expansive cellar up for auction online. (A live auction will also take place at Christie’s in New York on November 16, 2 PM.) Collectively, the cellar is worth a staggering $1 million.

Those who had the opportunity to dine at Charlie Trotter’s during its successful 25-year tenure will remember how important a part wine played in the experience. Trotter was inspired by wine in the dishes he created, and could always pull the perfect complement from the depths of his cellar. When the restaurant closed, more than 4,000 bottles of wine, spread between four separate cellars (one each for white, red, large-format bottles, and dessert wine), were left unopened. The wines come from all over the world—France, California, Australia, Spain, Italy, and beyond—offering both New and Old World tastes.

Highlights of the online auction include a vintage 1990 Dom Perignon Oenotheque signed by Richard Geoffroy (Lot #525; includes 4 magnums at an estimated cost of $3,000-4,000); and a vintage 1986 Richebourg (Lot #629; includes 4 bottles at an estimated cost of $20,000-24,000).

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