Authenticity of Leroy Richebourg 1989

Dear all,

Would like to get your opinions on the authenticity of these leroy wines. I have only seen metal foil capsule of this vintage in the past. So Im really not sure here. Does anyone know if they have ever produced waxed ones for this vintage?

Thanks for any insights in advance.

Regards,
S.



Paging Dr. @don_cornwell, please report to triage 1

3 Likes

The bottles of Leroy that I once owned from the 1988-1991 vintages had white and grey metal capsules with black printing. But my bottles were imported from Europe. The official US import versions, at least in 1993, had red wax capsules. I had originally thought that all of the 1988-1990 wines had the white and grey metal capsules, but I have subsequently seen 1990 vintage Leroy wines with the US back label with red wax capsules that appeared to be legitimate bottles.

Here, it might have helped to see a photo showing the bottom of the bottles (in order to see whether the glass is all identical.) I can’t be sure, but I wondered whether the bottles on the far left and far right (which have the warped and gouged wax capsules) might be slightly larger diameter and taller bottles. On the photo with the bottles laying down, that’s one thing that got my attention particularly. So did the fact that the bottles on the ends extend forward into the foreground much more than the four bottles in the middle. It could just be the photo or how the bottles were placed on the table. (Those two bottles also have shorter wax capsules and the wax looks uneven and gouged out. But the wax problems could be random.)

The bottles here are not consecutively numbered, which tells you that the original owner/Sotheby’s consigner didn’t buy them in an OWC from Leroy. These bottles have Sotheby’s stickers on them, but I can’t tell if that is the auction department’s sticker, or their relatively new retail operation. Sotheby’s is among the very best of the auction houses with respect to authentication, but unless you know for sure that those bottles went through Sotheby’s auction, I wouldn’t assume that means that Sotheby’s auction department actually vetted these bottles.

There is an easy way to authenticate Leroy bottles (except where a refilled bottle could be in play), but it generally requires a physical inspection or very detailed close up photographs of the Leroy brand on the front of the label. The authentic bottles have the Leroy crown embossed into the paper above the large O in Leroy. If a bottle doesn’t have a distinct physically embossed crown that you can see and feel, it’s fake. Where the crown is printed in light grey ink, it’s fake. If the bottle does have the embossed crown, unless there’s a suggestion it could be a refilled bottle, it’s legitimate.

Hope this helps.

7 Likes

Thanks so much for the insightful observations. I think those stickers were from Sotheby’s auction department. I was told these wines were authenticated by their consultant Michael Egan. I have attached his comments below.

Let me try to request a photo of the bottom of these photos.

Isnt it easy to fake embossed paper?

3 Likes

All the US-importer 1990 domaine wines I bought on release all had wax like this.

3 Likes

Amazing info to file away

Duplicating the embossed design into the paper sounds a lot easier than it is and the Leroy crown design is pretty distinctive… I have not seen it done so far.

Not specifically for the 1989 vintage, but generally bottles sold in France have metal capsules (with the green tax emblem) … and exported bottles are waxed in red …(because no tax emblem is necessary)