Top 10: Most Expensive Wines
Entertainment Correspondent - Every 2nd Wednesday
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There's more to wine than two-dollar Night Train. In the mid-'80s,
billionaire Malcolm Forbes paid approximately $155,000 at auction for a
bottle of wine. The bottle, which was believed to have come from Thomas
Jefferson's own collection and dated back to 1787, was then put on
display under strong lights and at the wrong angle. These conditions
eventually made the cork fall into the bottle, and the wine lost its
value and was thrown away.
Yes, it's true that you don't have to pay a fortune for a bottle of
wine, but keep in mind that you usually get what you pay for. If you
really want to impress that special lady, show her your cellar of fine
wines -- or at least display your knowledge of them. Read on to
discover the ten most expensive wines available on the market. Note
that all prices are in US dollars and were evaluated on the basis of a
750 ml bottle from a retailer.
Number 10Chteau Lafite Rothschild Pauillac 1996 - app. $287
Talk about being at the right place at the right time. In the mid-18th
century, a French politician was about to be shipped off overseas, but
not before visiting a physician. The doctor prescribed him some Lafite
wine as a tonic. This politician enjoyed it so much that he offered
some bottles to King Louis XV, and before long this wine became the
star of Versailles and was dubbed "the King's wine." Remarkably dark,
it sports mineral aromas of mint and black currant. Flavorful, its
texture is silky and lingers in the mouth.
Number 9Chteau Margaux 1995 - app. $402
Its color is almost black, yet it couldn't taste farther from ink.
Containing passionate fragrances of blackberry and cassis, this smooth
and racy vintage is powerful but still manages to be compact in its
fruit structure. This vineyard goes back a thousand years and it has
definitely mastered the art. The 1995 vintage recalls the 1986 for its
complexity but it's also a good reminder of the 1990 for its elegance.
The 1994 version is also quite expensive.
Number 8Chteau Haut Brion Pessac-Lognan 1982 - app. $528
What distinguishes Haut Brion is the fact that it produced the oldest
Bordeaux in the world. Founded in 1550, Jean de Pontac built everything
from the ground up for the sole purpose of winemaking. Soon after, he
opened a tavern in London to serve his wine exclusively. It was an
undeniable success. This red 1982 vintage is still youthful and quite
spectacular, holding its own against the best wines in the world. It
has matured well with time but isn't expected to improve in years to
come. So drink it soon!
Number 7Chteau Mouton Rothschild Pauillac 1986 - app. $592
Remember the Lafite Rothschild? The Chteau Mouton originated from the
English branch of the same family in the mid-19th century. They were
the first to launch special labels designed by famous artists such as
Chagall, Picasso and Warhol after World War II. Selected as one of the
top ten wines of 1986 by Wine Spectator magazine, this Chteau Mouton
will recall memories of chocolate, raspberries and spices. This
palatable vintage leaves an incredibly elongated aftertaste.
Number 6Chteau La Mondotte Saint-Emilion 1996 - app. $608
La Mondotte was purchased by the Neipperg family at the same time that
they bought Chteau Canon-La-Gaffelire and Clos de l'Oratoire.
Therefore, this tiny vineyard of little more than 11 acres was
condemned to play second fiddle for a number of years. But in 1996, La
Mondotte reached maturity and exploded on the wine scene. Fairly fruity
and exotic, this vintage is lavish and has a lengthy finish. It is
often compared to Le Pin.