March 20th, 2018
Home | Log in! or Register

On Top Shelf
D.B. ReynoldsD.B. Reynolds
Fresh Fiction
Fresh Pick

Reviewer Application

March gives us books to "roar" over

Slideshow image

Since your web browser does not support JavaScript, here is a non-JavaScript version of the image slideshow:

slideshow image
Theodosia Browning investigates a Charleston steeped in tradition and treachery

slideshow image
How far would you go to get justice for the one you love?

slideshow image
The trick is to marry for love—a task easier said than done!

slideshow image
They are part of an elite unit. On task. Off grid.

slideshow image
True love deserves a second chance . . . .

slideshow image
Shocking evidence hits close to home...

The Billionaire's Vinegar
Benjamin Wallace

The Mystery of the World's Most Expensive Bottle of Wine

May 2008
On Sale: May 13, 2008
336 pages
ISBN: 0307338770
EAN: 9780307338778
Add to Wish List


It was the most expensive bottle of wine ever sold.

In 1985, at a heated auction by Christie’s of London, a 1787 bottle of Château Lafite Bordeaux—one of a cache of bottles unearthed in a bricked-up Paris cellar and supposedly owned by Thomas Jefferson—went for $156,000 to a member of the Forbes family. The discoverer of the bottle was pop-band manager turned wine collector Hardy Rodenstock, who had a knack for finding extremely old and exquisite wines. But rumors about the bottle soon arose. Why wouldn’t Rodenstock reveal the exact location where it had been found? Was it part of a smuggled Nazi hoard? Or did his reticence conceal an even darker secret?

It would take more than two decades for those questions to be answered and involve a gallery of intriguing players—among them Michael Broadbent, the bicycle-riding British auctioneer who speaks of wines as if they are women and staked his reputation on the record-setting sale; Serena Sutcliffe, Broadbent’s elegant archrival, whose palate is covered by a hefty insurance policy; and Bill Koch, the extravagant Florida tycoon bent on exposing the truth about Rodenstock.

Pursuing the story from Monticello to London to Zurich to Munich and beyond, Benjamin Wallace also offers a mesmerizing history of wine, complete with vivid accounts of subterranean European laboratories where old vintages are dated and of Jefferson’s colorful, wine-soaked days in France, where he literally drank up the culture.

Suspenseful, witty, and thrillingly strange, The Billionaire’s Vinegar is the vintage tale of what could be the most elaborate con since the Hitler diaries. It is also the debut of an exceptionally powerful new voice in narrative non-fiction.

Media Buzz

Good Morning America - June 30, 2008
Marketplace - PRI - May 14, 2008


No comments posted.

Registered users may leave comments.
Log in or register now!

© 2003-2018
all rights reserved

Google+ Google+