The Origin of Old Liquors
It all started in 1971 when a young man purchased his first two bottles of cognac. Raised on the countryside estate of Breda in the Netherlands by a father who knew everything about cognac and a grandfather who was an expert on the subject, he had always been fascinated by the rich history and nuances of this refined spirit.
Those first bottles sparked a lifelong passion. Throughout the 1970s, he would frequent antique markets in France, slowly accumulating fine cognacs, Armagnacs, ports and whiskeys for good prices that he stumbled upon. It was just a hobby then - picking up a special bottle here and there that caught his eye.
In the 1980s, the hobby turned into a collection when he acquired 250 bottles from a friend. His stock continued to grow as cognac prices started rising. Soon he was traveling to auctions around the world in search of new treasures. From New York to Geneva to Sydney, his collection knew no borders.
By the 1990s, prices were skyrocketing. No longer just a collector, he now saw rare liquor as a wise investment. He spent decades perfecting his repertoire, ultimately amassing nearly 10,000 bottles in the cellar of his countryside estate, each with its own unique story from where it was found. The cellar was stuffed to the brim with bottles coated in centuries of dust, testifying to their age and authenticity.
As he entered his later years, he dreamt of passing on his precious collection so future generations could enjoy these rare liquors. That's when OldLiquors.com was born - an online shop offering his most prized bottles for fellow enthusiasts across the globe. Here his lifetime of passion lives on, preserved in every bottle, shaped by the memories of where each one came from. And for the first time, parts of this legendary collection are being brought to U.S. collectors, Investors and Fine Liquor Enthousiasts.
" My grandfather was a garden and cellar master at the Heiligerberg estate in Leusden. He lived and worked there for 50 years, responsible for supplying the estate with food and beverages. He had a profound knowledge of wines and cognac, which he procured for the estate's owner. My grandfather passed away in 1933.
I was born on that same estate in Leusden, and my grandfather passed down his cognac knowledge to my father. In 1936, the estate's owner asked my father to clear out the cellars as the estate was being sold. During this process, he was allowed to take with him all the old bottles of strong liquors, among which were a few hundred bottles of Cognac and Armagnac.
My father was well-versed in cognac, often indulging and conversing about it. Then in 1971, I bought two bottles of old Cognac, which my father found excessively expensive, especially since I didn't drink alcohol.
In the 70s, while dealing in antiques, I often bought old bottles of Cognac and Armagnac from 'brocanteurs' in France. I enjoyed the hunt for these ancient bottles.
In 1978, I had the opportunity to clear out my father's cellar, inheriting his stock of old Cognac and Armagnac bottles, some of which had belonged to my grandfather. By the 80s, I had amassed several hundred bottles of very old Cognac and Armagnac.
Noticing the rising prices of these old spirits in the 90s, I started speculatively acquiring rare and ancient bottles of Cognac and Armagnac at auctions like Sotheby's and Christie's, expanding my collection further. My passion for these spirits and their history, inherited from my father and grandfather, has turned into a significant and cherished part of my life."
Bay van der Bunt, Collector