For our third episode in the series, GuildSomm director of operations and editor Stacy Ladenburger speaks with Marie Keep, founder and director of the Fine Wines Department at Skinner Auctioneers. They discuss the operations behind assessing, appraising, and cataloguing a wine cellar for auction, how the secondary market differs from the retail market, the effect of the pandemic on the wine auction business, and more. Marie also offers advice to wine professionals who are interested in transitioning into the auction space for the first time.
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Marie Keep is the senior vice president at Skinner Auctioneers and the director of its Fine Wines Department, which she founded in 2006. Marie launched the division in partnership with retail partner Lower Falls Wine Company, a third-generation wine seller based west of Boston. Skinner is New England's only major auction house to offer fine wines.
In addition to her role with the wine department, Marie manages day to day operations at Skinner and oversees 60 auctions and events annually. She joined Skinner in 1998 as the Boston gallery director, a position she held until 2007. Marie began her career in New York at Christie’s auction house. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Vassar College.
Marie is actively involved in Boston’s food and wine community, and she is a longtime wine connoisseur.