Wine is an alcoholic beverage derived from fermented grape juice, and it can come in a wide variety of colors, flavors and textures. There are three main factors that determine the price of a wine:
When it comes to some of the most expensive wines, the most unique flavors and textures emanate a truly unforgettable flavor that not only cultivates a charm for your wine arsenal, but makes a viable investment to add to your wine collection. Here are 10 of the most expensive wines in the world that your money can buy:
Richebourg Grand Cru is cultivated in Burgundy, France's Cote de Nuit region, which is known for it's heady Pino Noir wines. Richebourg Grand Cru can vary in color, from a rich red to a deep, dark blackish-purple, with notes of hawthorn, peach blossom, cherries, black currants, and mushrooms, lending a savory and classic taste. While the flavors of this wine are very intense when freshly cultivated, it produces a richer, warmer flavor after aging for several years. While the name Richebourg literally means "rich city," as an homage to the regions rich soil, Grand Cru is the highest quality wine of this region.
Penfolds Grange Hermitage is the most expensive Australian wine and was purchased by a wine collector at an auction for the steep price of $38,420. The wine is essentially Sharaz with a splash of Cabernet Sauvignon and is hailed as one of the country's superior wines. Penfolds utilizes fully ripe Shiraz grapes for its intense flavor. The 1951 series of wines are encased in rare hand-blown bottles which helps to hold its sweet taste and length of flavor. The wine itself is an orangish color with a light, crisp taste with subtle tannins, according to the 2012 Penfolds Re-corking clinics and is one of the highest paid Australian wines at auction.
Chateau d'Yquem is a rare wine that spans hundreds of years and comes in a variety of different flavors and aromas. However, 1811 is the only Chateau d'Yquem white wine that exceeds $100,000 and is still potent with flavor. Chateau d'Yquem is fermented in 100 percent new oak wood and emits a flavor of flowers, tropical fruit, honey, stone, apricot, peaches and oranges at its peak. As it ages, it takes on more of a deeper golden tone and emits a scent of caramel, butterscotch, and a honeyed tropical fruit essence. With its ability to age for long periods of time, Chateau d'Yquem is an exceptional wine that delivers a rich velvety texture with a unique acidity.
This irreplaceable bottle of wine once belonged to Thomas Jefferson and was purchased by wine collector William Solokin in 1989. But he never got to taste it. When Solokin debuted it at a Margaux dinner party a The Four Seasons Hotel, the wine was dropped by a waiter and insurers paid out $225,000. Though there might never be a bottle as valued as the 1787, Chateau Margaux is considered the home of some of the greatest wines on the market.
It is said that Chateaux Lafite is the most expensive standard wine ever sold in the 19th century and was paid for by triplets who each purchased a bottle that ranged from $230,000 to $690,000. However, the speculated price was actually $60,000 each. Today, Chateaux Lafite is one of the most sought-after wines in the world and boasts a flavor of first-growth Bordeaux with a hint of cedar wood.
Armand de Brignac Rose is a full-bodied rosé comprised of Pinot Noir, Pinot Meuneier and Chardonnay. It is as tasty as it is stylish, and contains notes of red fruit and pastry encompassed in a rosy pink bottle that can be stored for another 10-15 years. This fine wine pairs well with truffled veal, duck confit and wild salmon. An extremely limited supply is available because the staff is so small and the production process is so labor-intensive. Along with this, part of the reason this 2013 bottle was so expensive is its size -- the bottle is the equivalent of 40 regular-size wine bottles and weighed in at an astounding 100 pounds. It was uncorked at a Las Vegas nightclub for a Jay-Z after party.
Shipwrecked 1907 Heidsieck was first sold at an auction at the Ritz-Carlton in Moscow, Russia, for $275,000, and comes with an unconventional story. During World War I, a German submarine sunk a Swedish freighter that was delivering wine to Tsar Nicholas II of Russia. Eighty years later, the Swedish ship was salvaged off the coast of Finland, where 2,000 bottles of wine were recovered and later sold at auction. The wine has a unique flavor of charred graham cracker, lemon, caramelized bananas and oranges with a salty finish because of the sea.
Cheval-Blanc is considered a "miraculous vintage" and is known as one of the most delicious wines of our time. Powerful and extremely well-balanced, the 1947 Cheval-Blanc contains notes of pastry, macaron, almond, fig, cherry, kernel and orange. Its high alcoholic content lends a very rich, yet sweet flavor that makes it truly unique. Cheval-Blanc also lends aromas of acacia and offers a rich complexity, as it is grown on a vineyard with a climate that has remained quite unchanged since 1871.
Screaming Eagle wine contains a robust flavor of Cabernet Sauvignon, and while you can certainly find a 1992 bottle at much lower prices, one bottle was auctioned off at an astounding $500,000 for charity in 2000. Aged in 60 percent cork and unrefined, Screaming Eagle contains notes of blackcurrant with a subtly toasted oak undernote, imparting a full-bodied, yet elegant taste. Although there aren't currently that many bottles of Screaming Eagle, which lends to its allure, it is still being produced in small batches and made available on a small vineyard in California's Napa Valley region.
Created by luxury designer Alexander Amosu, Taste of Diamonds (Gout de Diamants) white wine won the "Best Taste" award in 2012 by Champagne Business News and now tops the list of the most expensive wines in the world at a whopping $1.8 million. Marked by an 18-carat gold vintage logo surrounding a 19-carat white diamond, Taste of Diamonds is a champagne, a type of wine that originated in the Champagne region in France. It has a distinctive flavor created by combining Grand Cru Chardonnay, Pino Noir, and Pinot Meunier, which gives lends an aromatic flavor with fruity undertones.
Some of the most expensive wines in the world are also some of the most delicious that you will ever taste. If you are so lucky to try any of these top 10 wines in the world, you're in for a treat -- a bold taste, luxurious notes and rich history behind the name.