How to win at a wine auction

If you think wine lists can be intimidating, try a wine auction. Fortune joined Scott Zenko, who specializes in bidding on behalf of clients who don't want to go it alone, at a recent New York City auction to soak up some insider tips.

Rule No. 1
Rule No. 1
Try to snag a buyback.

When the reserve price isn't met, the lot is "bought back." Zenko saw that this lot had been taken off the block, so he asked to reopen the lot and got the bottles for $800. Note: This works best for established auction pros who can discreetly signal an auction staffer.






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