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Auctioneers and Appraisers

Author Archives: Michael Moser

Puzzling Out the Gentleman’s Auction with Stewart T. Coffin

It’s no coincidence that the cover lots for this season’s Gentleman’s Auction are puzzles designed by Stewart T. Coffin. The puzzles are dual purpose: at once objets d’art suitable for display in a museum and an embodiment of ordo ab chao. When the puzzles arrived through our Modern Design department, I knew they were perfect for this auction.

Of the eight puzzles included in the collection, only four arrived assembled. I’m not sure if this was a test from the consignor for us to prove our mettle or if they had never been assembled in the first place.… Read More

Goose Island: At the Intersection of Tradition and Innovation

Goose Island Beer Company

Founded in 1988 by John Hall, Goose Island has been at the forefront of the craft beer boom in the United States. Starting from scratch at a time when “microbrew” wasn’t part of everyday lexicon, Goose Island started to push the boundaries and challenge the American beer drinker’s palate with hop-forward ales and a contagious passion for expanding the horizons of what defines American beer.

In 1992, Hall created what is arguably the first truly American style of beer since Prohibition: bourbon barrel aged beers.… Read More

Dressing Like a Gentleman

They say that “clothes make the man,” but it takes more than clothes to make a gentleman. That said, you can’t overlook the importance of a first impression. Skinner specialists have hand-selected items for the gift-giving season to help accessorize the gentleman in your life. We are excited to bring you over one hundred lots of intriguing, unique, and luxurious items to fit a range of holiday shopping budgets.

The Gentleman’s Auction – Online opens with pocket watches, wristwatches, cuff links and luggage; items essential to any gentleman’s wardrobe.… Read More

Wines of the Chateau de Beaucastel

In the far, northern reaches of Chateauneuf du Pape sits the Chateau de Beaucastel. Named for the Beaucastel family, who  purchased the land in 1549 as an agricultural venture, the property has a history of winemaking dating back to 1792. At the turn of the 20th century, phylloxera ravaged vineyards across the French countryside, and then-owner Elie Dussaud decided to sell the vineyard rather than replant and start over. So in 1909 Pierre Tramier took control and oversaw the replanting efforts before leaving the vineyard to his son-in-law, Pierre Perrin.… Read More

The Story of Pappy Van Winkle and the Appeal of Rare Bourbon

Pappy Van Winkle bourbon has popped up recently in articles extolling its desirability and scarcity. There is even a documentary film, Chasing Pappy, about one man’s quest for the elusive libation. Long considered one of the finest bourbons available, this beverage is complex, smooth and a bit sweeter than most others on the market thanks to the inclusion of wheat in the mash. The third-generation company crafts this bourbon from a family recipe developed by Julian “Pappy” Van Winkle.… Read More

Fine Wine Guide: Cabernet Sauvignon from Schrader Cellars

After co-founding Colgin-Schrader Cellars in 1992, Fred Schrader went on to fulfill his dream of producing world-class Cabernet bearing his name on the label, co-founding Schrader Cellars in 1998. Producing world class wine is one thing, but the heights of Schrader’s success is simply dizzying: recipient of James Laube’s first 100 point score for an American wine (2007 CCS and 2007 Old Sparky), back-to-back-to-back 100 point scores from Robert Parker (2006-2008 Old Sparky and 2006-2008 CCS) and wines lauded as the finest of the year from the profoundly great 2007 vintage.… Read More

Fine Ales at Auction: A Guide to Aged Beer

Similar to wine, the vast majority of beer – even craft beer – is meant to be drunk very soon after production. However, many high-alcohol beers, barrel aged beers and beers that undergo a secondary, in-bottle fermentation are thought to be the ideal candidates for ageing.

Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars

In its May 2nd Fine Wines auction, Skinner will offer a unique vertical lot of Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars. Often considered one America’s “First Growths,” the story of Warren Winiarski and Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars is one of classic American ingenuity, perseverance and, ultimately, success.

After meeting Nathan Fay in 1969 and recognizing the profundity of the cabernet from Fay’s first vineyard, Warren Winiarski went on to purchase an adjacent property in what is now known as the Stag’s Leap district and founded Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars in 1970.… Read More

Choosing a Wine for Thanksgiving

Wine for Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday by far since it’s purely about enjoying food and company. Food and company also happen to be the two best friends of wine. What is the best wine to serve at Thanksgiving? Plenty of websites out there offer up lists and suggestions, but there really isn’t a clear answer to that question.

The Art of Wine Tasting

Wine Tasting in Boston

The other night, a client asked me how I approach tasting a wine. We were about to sit down to a dinner at Troquet and Chris Campbell, the wine director for the restaurant, had laid out what looked like a chess set worth of glasses for each diner. I’ve learned that the best way to keep track of wines at a dinner like this is to take semi-formal tasting notes.

There are several popular resources for tasting notes and each taster has his or her own way of doing things.… Read More

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