We reach the end of our search for the world’s most expensive bottles with the 10 most expensive wines.
© Domaine Leroy
| | Burgundy cellars hold some of the most expensive wines in the world.
We are at the end of our quest for the world’s most wallet-emptying wine. The big question is, where is Burgundy?
Well, where else is it? It is among the top 10 most expensive wines available in retail stores worldwide.
After traveling through different regions and vines looking for the most expensive examples, one thing became very clear. Burgundy prices, at least at the top, are now completely different from other wines. Take a look at the wine list below and you’ll see that 9 out of the 10 most expensive wines come from this region. To put it into perspective, 44 of the 50 most expensive wines listed in the database are from Burgundy.
The frenzy to buy the best Burgundy wines shows no signs of abating, and prices are skyrocketing.
The big picture is also interesting, as the prices of other collector’s items of wine have risen at a much more modest pace. For example, in Bordeaux, prices of many big name brands have actually fallen in the last 12 months. In Italy, the top-priced wine increased even more modestly. Napa’s top 10 wines (by price) managed a healthy average gain of 36% of his global average price, albeit distorted by two big price increases. These wines started out with a much lower base price than what we’re seeing today.
Burgundy prices are still skyrocketing. Amazing when you consider that shopping his basket with a bottle of each wine on this year’s list costs 41% more than the same basket of wine last year. All the more surprising considering that just three years ago, some people were predicting the bursting of the Burgundy balloon.
So what are these super wines?
As always, before we do, let’s find out what we mean when we say “most expensive” when it comes to wine.
First of all, we are not looking at individual vintages. Since the wines must be generally available, there is a minimum number of offers that can be made per wine.
We then calculate a global average price per wine based on the actual prices charged on thousands of retail wine lists that we monitor around the world. We do not take into account the producers’ own pricing (or sales) claims or the claims of various wine representative bodies.
Another thing to note is that the prices in the long list are based on the snapshot taken on August 2nd, so today’s prices are based on August 30th prices as per this article. The price may be higher or lower than displayed on
Wine-Searcher’s World’s Most Expensive Wines:
|wine name||Score||average price|
|Domaine Leroy-Musigny Grand Cru||98||$37,700|
|Leroy Domaine Dauvnais Chevalier Montrachet Grand Cru||98||$31,220|
|Leroy Domaine Dauvnay Clio Batart Montrachet Grand Cru||97||$29,731|
|Leroy Domaine Dauvnay Batart Montrachet Grand Cru||97||$27,241|
|Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Romanee-Conti Grand Cru||98||$25,330|
|Domaine Georges & Christophe Roumier Musigny Grand Cru||96||$19,946|
|Domaine Leflaive Montrachet Grand Cru||95||$18,296|
|Domaine Roumier Echezeaux Grand Cru||92||$16,653|
|Egon Muller Schartshofberger Riesling Trockenbeerenauslese||98||$16,165|
|Domaine Leroy Chambertin Grand Cru||98||$14,749|
Well, let’s applaud Egon Müller for his continued presence on these lists. His TBA of the amazing Schartzhofberger has kept this list down all Burgundy for the last few years. It’s also a relative bargain, even if it didn’t show a hefty year-over-year return on investment like some of its cohorts – prices have risen by $51 per bottle over the past year. Error at this price level.
Now let’s turn our attention to the five characters of the label. It does more for wine than any other letter. I’m Leroy. Last year there were three of her wines from Domaine Leroy or its sister winery, Domaine Dauvnay. Half the list is named this year. In fact, if you look at a long list of the most expensive wines, the Lilois name is in 31 of the top 50. Even with a top 50 that only includes six non-Burgundy wines, this is a crazy level of dominance.
There was a time when the list of the world’s most expensive wines was a roll call of wines from Domaine de la Romanée-Conti – better than red wines. Average retail prices for the three Domaine Dauvnay wines on the list (all Chardonnay) increased by 51%, 93% and 92% respectively. By contrast, Leroy Chambertin rose 31%, while top of the list Musigny rose his 15%.
However, let’s put them into perspective. The only wine to reach this level of average price increase was Leflaive Montrachet, whose price increased by 35% over his past year. The DRC flagship could “only” meet his 17% increase. Roumier Musigny saw him rise 27%, while the Echezeaux stablemate actually lost 19% of his global average price.
Anyway, the prices are surprisingly high. Only three wines broke the $20,000 barrier last year. This year, that number is five for her, and two more for him, possibly soon. However, whether such price increases and returns on investment are sustainable is rather controversial.
As long as Burgundy produces less and collectors are content to drive the price of a new car down to a bottle of Chardonnay, Burgundy will continue to be home to some of the most expensive wines in the world.
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