We’ve all seen movies where people battle over a bottle of wine. Wine tasting and collecting is considered a hallmark of top culture and refinement. Even in the popular James Bond movies the super spy can rattle off any wine, it’s vintage, and who probably stomped the grapes. The elite prize themselves regarding their wine acumen but there are some people that go over the top paying enormous amounts for a bottle of wine. This list shows the most expensive wines in the world.
10 – Shipwrecked 1907 Heidsieck.
Leave it to a torpedo from a German sub to be part of this story. In WWI a ship headed to the Court of Tsar Nicholas II of Russia got blasted out of the water by a U Boat. Two thousand bottles went to Davey Jones’ Locker and it wasn’t until 1998 that the bottles were salvaged. A price of $275,000 was had by collectors for this, the world’s most expensive champagne.
9 – Chateau Margaux 1787.
This story is hilarious. It’s about a bottle of wine that was said to have been worth $500,000. Another rumored bottled of wine supposedly owned by U.S. President Thomas Jefferson, this wine had experts debating its authenticity. The owner, William Sokolin, a wine merchant was looking to sell it at that price. As fate would have it at the Four Season Hotel, a waiter accidently knocked over the bottle and it broke. Insurance covering the bottle had to pony up around $225,000. Talk about crying over spilled milk.
8 – Chateau Lafite 1787.
This is considered the most expensive standard bottle of wine ever. A price of $156,450 was fetched and perhaps $160,000 by publisher Malcolm Forbes back in 1985. Legend has it this bottle of wine actually belonged to U.S. President Thomas Jefferson and was in the cellar of his home since the initials ThJ are found etched in the glass of the bottle itself.
7 – Cheval Blanc 1947.
6 – Chateau Mouton Rothschild 1945.
For a price tag of $114,614 this wine is praised as one of the greatest ever of the 20th Century. Its name alone makes it sound like something from a mystery movie but it is a real vintage with a cool name. Christie’s London is where this bottle was bid and won by an anonymous buyer.
5 – Chateau d’yquem 1787.
Known as the most expensive wine ever sold went for $100,000 in 2006. One might wonder what a wine that old and expensive tastes like. It’s sure either the buyer, who remains anonymous is either holding onto it or held one super cool party.
4 – Massandra 1775.
3 – Penfolds Grange Hermitage 1951.
2 – Romanee Conti DRC 1990.
Eight bottles of this wine cost $224,000 at an auction at the vaunted Sotheby’s in 1996. It’s because this wine had a low yield due to the process of production and overall quality. We’re talking detail here that includes the age of the vines, amount of land it’s grown on and more.
1 – Screaming Eagle Cabernet 1992.
This wine went for a whopping $500,000 during a charity in 2000. Some say it doesn’t qualify for this list but still, the price alone still is enough to set it apart and should be here. One would have to figure out via the volume of the bottle and each glass how much each sip would cost.
So as we can see, those stories of expensive wines are true and the stories behind them sometimes fantastic, astonishing or humorous. There’s no telling what bottles of vino are lost at sea or in deserts or high mountains, swamps and more. With all the shipping, war, air flights, lost bottles of good wine or wines from historical events can fetch big sums and hunters of such do whatever they can to procure them.
It’s not only that the wines are lost but also whom the owners were. Finding a secret wine cellar of some famous person like Napoleon or Julius Ceasar could totally turn into a auction bidding war that would set the world of winery ablaze. There are ancient wines out there. They’ve been found before. It just takes some looking.
As for modern day, it depends on volume of bottle sold, quality of the wine, and other factors. It’s rarer but it does happen that a modern day wine can fetch tens of thousands of dollars. Either way, each sip of any of these expensive wines means big money.