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Delhi Wine Club
World's Most Expensive Wine an Objet d'art

Posted: Friday, 29 June 2012 16:25

World's Most Expensive Wine an Objet d'art

June 29 : Penfolds, the leading producer of Australian fine wine re-launched yesterday its rare Penfolds 2004 Kalimna Cabernet Sauvignon Block 42, in twelve limited- edition ampoules completely encased in glass, each to be retailed at US $168,000, making it a piece of collectible art and the most expensive wine in the world sold from a winery.

Click For Large ViewApparently, the producers of the world- famous Grange have been so upset by it not retaining the position as the most expensive wine in Australia that they decided to re-launch in its current avatar, a wine that was reportedly released 5 years ago at only $225.  The wine is now available at $850 from the liquor chain Dan Murphy's (Source: which shows an average price of $667; the average is usually on the lower side).

Penfolds 2004 Kalimna Cabernet Sauvignon Block 42 is an extremely rare, single vineyard wine, produced only in exceptional vintages; the last one being 1996. It is produced from the oldest, continuously producing Cabernet Sauvignon vines in the world, claimed the company Press Release of yesterday’s date. These are 130-year-old vines from a 10-acre block at the edge of the Penfolds Kalimna property in Barossa Valley, about 60km North of Adelaide. Since it is produced in very small quantities, the demand is extremely high.

This wine was first released in 2007. It received excellent reviews with some experts rating it as the best 100% Cabernet Sauvignon ever produced in Australia. It set a record as the most expensive wine ever sold in New Zealand, when a 6-liter bottle (Methuselah, 8 standard bottles)  was auctioned for NZ$18,000 in 2007.

Penfolds Chief Winemaker, Peter Gago says, "Behind every Penfolds wine is the joy, energy, research and science that shapes it. The Ampoule Project is typical of the pioneering philosophy behind Penfolds' winemaking evolution. The collaboration with South Australia's finest artists has been a fitting tribute to one of South Australia's finest wines."

Click For Large ViewWhen the buyer is ready to drink and wants the ampoule to be opened, a senior member of the Penfolds winemaking team will personally attend the special opening ceremony for the owner (some media reports claim, perhaps erroneously, that Gago will personally travel). ‘The winemaker will travel to the destination of choice, where the ampoule will be ceremoniously removed from its glass plumb-bob casing and opened using a specially designed, tungsten-tipped, sterling silver scribe-snap. The winemaker will then prepare the wine using a beautifully crafted sterling silver tastevin,’ according to the Release.

Penfolds has created only 12 ampoules; one for its library, one to be auctioned for charity, and 10 for sale (2 in North America, 2 in Europe, 3 in Asia, and 3 in Australia and New Zealand). It may be a good opportunity for a billionaire Indian wine connoisseur to pick one of these ‘bottles’. It is on a rare occasion that a bottle can be imported without paying any taxes, legally. The policy allows two bottles of liquor or wine to be imported as duty free wines and caps the gift items at Rs.35.000: it does not clarify that wine or any other liquor should be within this amount-normally the wines do not cost more than a few thousand rupees at the duty-free shops.


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