As you must well know, price is always relative. It’s relative to how much dough you have in your pocket, and it’s also relative to the value of the thing you’re paying for. I’m a social drinker at best, but I appreciate a good bottle of wine. But I couldn’t ever imagine myself to pay $1.6 million for 114 bottles of wine (that’s over $14,000 a bottle!) bought at an auction in Hong Kong. No matter how vintage and rare they could be, a bottle of wine will never be of such value for me.
Paying over a million and a half for a lot of wine is out of the ordinary. It doesn’t happen every day, just like jackpots at the slots are not won that often. Just take a look at the Mega Jackpot at Royal Vegas. It’s value is currently at over $17 million, to which it has grown since April. A lucky Royal Vegas player has won the amazing jackpot worth over $7.5 million at the time – surely a win of a lifetime. The jackpot is connected to a series of Royal Vegas games, slot machines with various themes from African animals to The Dark Knight (Chris Nolan’s take on Batman). The next winner laying his (or her) hands on such a win will surely be exalted – and filthy rich. But somehow I can’t imagine him (or her) spending a tenth of it on a wine collection.
But you don’t have to attend an auction to see exorbitant price tags on beverages. There are several products that are commercially available with prices higher than a year’s wage in many countries.
The most expensive wine available is the Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru, sold for a maximum price of over $21,000 a bottle, depending on the year. Henri Jayer was a famous French winemaker, well known for his innovations in Burgundy wine-making. One reason for his wines to be so expensive is that his vineyard was small – only about 2.5 acres – and he believed in making small quantities of superior quality product.
One of the most expensive beers money can buy is indeed a special one. The water used for its manufacturing comes from a place untouched by civilization – an Antarctic iceberg. Made by a small Australian brewery, the beer was meant as a means of raising funds to save animals. Only 30 bottles of this special brew were made, and all of them were sold at an auction for prices between $800 – $1,800. All proceedings from the auction went to the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society.
Are these drinks of value? Well, not for me – I appreciate a cold one, but it doesn’t have to cost hundreds or thousands of dollars to be refreshing and to make my day.