The Billionaire's Vinegar: The Mystery of the World's Most Expensive Bottle of Wine

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Crown/Archetype, May 13, 2008 - True Crime - 336 pages
19 Reviews
The New York Times bestseller, updated with a new epilogue, that tells the true story of a 1787 Château Lafite Bordeaux—supposedly owned by Thomas Jefferson—that sold for $156,000 at auction and of the eccentrics whose lives intersected with it. Was it truly entombed in a Paris cellar for two hundred years? Or did it come from a secret Nazi bunker? Or from the moldy basement of a devilishly brilliant con artist? As Benjamin Wallace unravels the mystery, we meet a gallery of intriguing players—from the bicycle-riding British auctioneer who speaks of wines as if they are women to the obsessive wine collector who discovered the bottle. Suspenseful and thrillingly strange, this is the vintage tale of what could be the most elaborate con since the Hitler diaries.

“Part detective story, part wine history, this is one juicy tale, even for those with no interest in the fruit of the vine. . . . As delicious as a true vintage Lafite.” —BusinessWeek


From the Trade Paperback edition.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - rockinghorsedreams - LibraryThing

It's amazing what not reading the back of a book will do for your experience of reading the book. I didn't read the back of this book, so I wasn't expecting the ultimate outcome until I was well in ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - debbie.menzel - LibraryThing

This book started slowly and was rather dry, however as the main theme of the book emerged it was apparent that the dry backstory was necessary information. Overall, the book was a fascinating look into the world of old vintage wines and the people who collect and trade them. Read full review

Contents

Lot 337
3
Tomb Raider
21
Monsieur Yºuem
41
Provenance
57
What You Toſol Us
67
Imaginary ſalue
81
The Sweetness of Death
95
Salad Dressing
107
Radioactive
173
Letters from Hubs
183
Awash in Fakes
197
The Last Vertical
213
Koch Bottles
225
Ghost Particles
237
Tailing Meinhard
251
The Finish
265

A Pleasant Stain but Not a Great One
125
The Diviner of Wine
139
A Builtin Preference for the Obvious
153
Notes
283
Acknowledgments
315
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

BENJAMIN WALLACE, a New York Times bestselling author, has written for GQ, the Washington Post, Food & Wine, and Philadelphia, where he was the executive editor. He lives in Brooklyn.

Visit his website at BenjaminWallace.net.

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