Posted on 9th September 2015
Earlier this week, we were fascinated to hear that a 68-year-old single slice of the Queen’s wedding cake had been sold at auction in Lewes, East Sussex, for £500. Evidently, the fruitcake slice had been successfully preserved due to being doused in alcohol and kept in its original baking parchment box. Believe it or not the cake was still reckoned to be edible although probably not advisable to eat, especially with that price tag!
The cake itself towered at 9ft-high, weighed a hefty 500lbs and was large enough to be cut into 2,000 slices. Many of the pieces will have been consumed at the time but it just shows you that hanging onto something (however improbable) can really pay dividends.
We don’t get much in the way of food because of its obviously limited shelf life but we do regularly get asked to auction wines and spirits, which can either be enjoyed at the time or put away to age and potentially increase in value. In fact, such buys can prove to be a very good investment and fine wine boasts one of the best performing asset classes of the last 20 years, with sales becoming increasingly impressive.
At our last gallery sale we had several lots of wine that, in most instances, sold for way above their price estimates. This included a group of five bottles of 1976 Grand Vin de Chateau Latour that sold for £300 – way above the £50-£100 guide range. This may not be quite as much as the Queen’s cake but, at £60 a bottle, it’s not bad!