How much does that bottle of wine cost to make? Where $13 becomes $500 | Dr Vino’s wine blog

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Simon Staples of Berry Bros & Rudd, a patrician wine shop in London, has an estimate in today’s NYT on the actual cost to make a bottle of Lafite, which sells for about $500 retail (find this wine). To the tape:

Mr. Staples pointed to the example of Château-Lafite Rothschild, a first-growth Bordeaux, which soared from £675, or $955, for a 12-bottle case in the 2002 futures to £4,000 a case for 2005 — which he called “the best vintage I’ve ever tasted.” But despite merely average years subsequently, the price only fell back to £3,500 in 2006 and £2,800 in 2007. He estimated it cost the château €10, or $13, to make a bottle of the wine.

Wow, talk about return on investment! I actually get asked the question a lot about whether a winery’s costs are really reflected in a higher priced bottle. Certainly, there are expensive ways to make wine and there are inexpensive ways to make wine.


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