Paris Tour d'Argent auctions wine from famed cellar

8th December 2009, Comments 0 comments

Paris' most famous restaurant, the Tour d'Argent, began auctioning off thousands of bottles of the finest wine Monday in order to make space for new bottles in its vast four-century-old cellar.

PARIS - Six bottles of 1998 Chateau Haut-Brion white Bordeaux went for 1,400 euros (2,100 dollars), far more than the 480 euros auctioneers Piasa had expected at the two-day sale of around 18,000 bottles.

Three bottles of 1971 Chateau Rieussec, a sweet white Bordeaux, fetched 650 euros, six times the price Piasa had been hoping for. But most bottles went for roughly the expected price, said an AFP correspondent at the sale.

The Tour d'Argent, located by the Seine overlooking Notre Dame cathedral, boasts one of the largest private cellars in the world, and certainly one of the great historical collections of wine.

It hopes to bring in around a million euros at the auction whose proceeds will go to buying new wines to store in cellars currently crammed with 430,000 bottles of wines and spirits up to 200 years old.

Bought directly from vintners, none of the bottles has ever been on the market. Bordeaux wines include Chateau Latour (1975, 1982, 1990), Chateau Cheval Blanc (1928, 1949, 1966) and Chateau Margaux (1990).

Among Loire valley wines is a Vouvray Haut Lieu Huet (1919) while the Burgundy region includes a Puligny Montrachet (1992) and Vosne Romanee (1988).

Profits from the oldest bottle, a 1788 cognac, a Fine Champagne Clos du Griffier, will go to charity.

The Tour d'Argent, which is popular with celebrities such as Woody Allen, Paulo Coelho and Pedro Almodovar, has a wine list that weighs eight kilos (17-and-a-half pounds) and lists 15,000 wines over 400 pages.


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