This $18,000 Bottle of Wine May Be Undrinkable

A bottle of one of the world’s rarest wines sold for $18,000 at a London auction Thursday. There’s just one problem – it may be undrinkable.

The Chateau Mouton Rothschild 1945 went to a private collector in Europe, auction house Bonhams said. The selling price – which equals about $1,500 a glass and could cover a Learjet charter from London to Saint-Tropez – was at the low end of expectations because the vintage suffered from oxidation, according to Richard Harvey, Bonhams’ global head of wine.

The ullage, an industry term which refers to the space between the wine and the bottom of the corkamorimcork This $18,000 Bottle of Wine May Be Undrinkable
by Amorim Cork
, was below the neck of the bottle, ” which points to an increased chance of the wine being oxidized and undrinkable,” Harvey said in an interview before the sale. Had it been in better condition, the 70-year-old bottle, part of a vintage described by critic Michael Broadbent as the “Churchill of wine,” could have fetched twice the 10,000-pound ($15,000) to 15,000-pound range Bonhams had estimated in its sale catalog.