by Countryside Alliance

The Countryside Alliance held the annual London Wine Auction Dinner on Wednesday 2 October in the Hintze and Raphael Galleries at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. 

For the dinner, the Raphael Gallery was transformed into a glorious wild hedgerow and the great and the good of the city and countryside were wined and dined in complete style by top London caterer, Rhubarb.  

Billed as London’s largest dinner party by The Financial Times; it did not disappoint. 250 guests were treated to a delicious dinner of Eggs Drumkilbo, the Queen Mother’s favourite dish, Truffled Guinea Fowl, chocolate toadstools, pebbles and foraged truffles and the finest selection of English cheeses donated by Fortnum & Mason finished off by Jude’s miniature ice creams.  

A figure of £218,000 net was raised.  The dinner was chaired by Dick Turpin who made a wonderful speech about the hilarity of such a famous highwayman raising money and it was a veritable ‘who’s who of the city’ which included Jim Rutherford, Simon Mackenzie Smith, Rupert Fane of Hannam & Partners, Rollo Head of Finsbury, and Nick Miles of Montfort.

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Drinks were held in the Hintze Gallery and sponsored by Berry Brothers & Rudd who provided magnums of their delicious Grand Cru Berry Bros & Rudd Champagne. Silent Pool gave their beautiful bottles of gin. Guests enjoyed a wonderful sunny evening overlooking the John Madejski Garden at the V&A. 

Wines were supplied by Berry Bros. & Rudd, Charles Taylor of Montrachet and Johnny Goedhuis. Vintage Fonseca Port was donated by rising star 67 Pall Mall and Blenheim Water by The Duke of Marlborough.   

Harry Dalmeny was superb on and off the auction rostrum raising a record sum in the live auction and as well as providing top notch entertainment for the guests!  Some of the most popular lots in the auction, which was sponsored by Niquesa Fine Jewellery, were a unique day’s grouse and partridge shooting donated by the Duke of Northumberland, Wilson Young and Harry Dobson and Four Grouse drives for nine guns on each of the four premier grouse moors in the North Pennines donated by James Fenwick, Michael George, Muggleswick Estate and Daphne Scott-Harden. There was also a four course dinner for nine donated by Berry Brothers & Rudd and a wonderful luxury holiday of a lifetime at The Nautilus in the Maldives donated by luxury award winning travel company, Red Savannah.

The guests were reluctant to leave at Midnight and the party carried on at 5 Hertford Street. The City was a little bit quieter on Thursday morning. 

For further information about the 25th Anniversary London Wine Auction Dinner in 2020 please contact Milly Browne on 07766445792.

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