Published July 26, 2011
LONDON – A French wine expert paid $117,000 for a legendary bottle of 1811 Chateau d'Yquem making it the most expensive bottle of white wine ever sold, The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.
The precious bottle's new owner, Christian Vanneque, a former sommelier at the Paris restaurant La Tour d'Argent, unveiled it at a news conference Tuesday and said he plans to take it to a new restaurant he is opening in Bali, Indonesia.
"It will be featured and displayed in a bulletproof showcase, like a painting, so people can see it easily," Vanneque told the Journal. "This showcase will be temperature and humidity-controlled. It'll be a mini-Fort Knox, impossible to open."
But it will not be there forever: Vanneque said he planned to drink it in 2017 at La Tour d'Argent to mark the 50th anniversary of his career.
The standard-sized bottle is one of the "Comet Vintages," taking their name from the Flaugergues Comet, which passed Earth in 1811. To add a bit more historical perspective, 1811 was the year
Jane Austen published 'Sense and Sensibility" and American troops defeated Native American Chief Tecumseh at the Battle of Tippecanoe.
Chateau d'Yquem is produced near Sauternes, in the Bordeaux region of France, according to AFP.
Steven Williams of the Antique Wine Co., which sold the wine, told WSJ he acquired it in 2007 when he bought the entire cellar of a major European private collector.