I get a phone call from a coworker that tells me a neighbor of his is recently widowed and her husband had a sizeable wine cellar that she wants to sell. My first thought was a cellar full of old Mouton Cadet.
I show up and the cellar is in the far corner of the basement in a separate room. It was nice and cool so my hopes were up.
The first thing I notice is a rack of German wines. Spats, Aus, and others from the 20’s and 30’s!!! Hopes for these were soon dashed….most of the corks were pushing out and wine had leaked all over the floor. (Don’t people notice this???) I threw away almost all of the Germans, it was very sad since a well aged Riesling always hits the spot.
I had to box up all the empty and leaking bottles of inexpensive Port and Sherry. I couldn’t even stand in the cellar when I got there because of everything on the floor.
I looked in the corner and saw the gold mine, FIRST GROWTHS!!!
I also saw several Burgundies!
Finally some action!
I sorted everything out and continued to throw away bottles of Burgundy from 1937 that had completely evaporated.
I will attach the complete list at the end of this note for those interested. I believe I have enough interest from people here locally to buy these.
Hey John, I bought an OWC of 67 Palmer at auction about three years ago in anticipation of my 40th. I think I paid $800 plus the vig. Those that I’ve drunk have been really pretty good, if not long for this world. Given the personal significance I am more than happy with the purchase, FWIW.
Several years ago, a friend of mine made a similar discovery.
Before he was married, his wife had owned a small restaurant. She had bought a wine cooler and stocked it with wine for the patrons. After a few years she sold the restaurant but kept the cooler.
When she married, the cooler came to live in the basement of the couple’s home.
Eventually, her husband fell in with bad companions and became interested in wine. They had forgotten about the cooler in the basement until one day they decided to clean it out. When they opened the cooler they found a lot of 1982 Bordeaux as well as many fine Burgs. from that era.
I know this because I got to drink the 1982 Cheval Blanc out of that cooler (twice) and never forgot what a fine first growth can mature into.
I might also add that, as a result of this incident, I have a part of my cellar sectioned off for my daughter - it will be hers when I die. Maybe she will enjoy a similar revelation.
“how did she get wind of pricing?” -talk about FAIL. Are you going to screw over a widow for wine??
The wine should be sent to auction-let the market decide what it is worth. I’ve heard a number of stories over the years where some guys are proud of themselves for buying 1st growths by the case for $100 from some unsuspecting widow.
Personally I wouldn’t have thrown out anything-I’d prefer full disclosure re cellar conditions and old Germans are notorious for leaking-doesn’t necessarily mean the conditions were poor.
did the wine cellar double as a sauna? How could bottles of Burgundy be empty–completely evaporated? How could the Rieslings have leaked so badly? We all have Rieslings with “splooge” on them, but typically the leak seals off and the fills are fine. This is anything but a pristine cellar.
I don’t see why people think all the wine is bad because there were many that had leaked. Like I said before, the wines from the 20’s and 30’s had been moved several times over the years and could have been cooked early.
The Bordeaux had all been purchased since they lived in the house and had not been moved. Plus the German wines are 30 YEARS older than the Bordeaux.