A high-end wine and liquor store in New York City has the only bottle in the United States of the most expensive Cognac in the world. Croizet Cognac Leonie 1858 is currently on display at Financial District Wine and Liquor and can be purchased for the mere price of $156,760.
The bottle, which has been carefully preserved by the Croizet (pronounced KWA-ZAY) family for more than 150 years, was sold at auction in Shanghai, China, for 1 million yuan (approx. $156,760) and is recognized by the Guinness Book of Records as the most expensive cognac sold at auction.
“What makes this bottle so special is that, unlike other popular cognacs which are blends, every drop of cognac in this bottle is from 1858. It’s not a blend; it doesn’t have linings of gold on it. It’s just an old bottle that you can’t get anywhere else,” FiDi Wine and Liquor owner Lee Tachman said.
Tachman goes on to suggests that the bottle is also pre-phylloxera -- a term which refers to the period before the Great French Wine Blight that occurred when a large group of tiny yellow insects destroyed a large number of grapevines by killing their roots. The insects were introduced to Europe around 1860, almost two years after Croizet Cognac Leonie had been locked away in the Croizet family “paradis.”
Cognac Croizet Americas president Gennady Agrest confirmed in an email that FiDi Wine and Liquor will have the first bottle of Croizet Leonie 1858 in the US for sale, although it is not for sale right now, as it is pending clearance by the TTB (Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau) and the New York State Liquor Authority.
Once someone shells out the astronomical fee that's required to own the extremely rare bottle of cognac, one question comes to mind: Will they open it?
“I don’t know, it’s really 50/50,” Tachman said. “People think that whoever buys it, it’s not going to matter if they open it up. It’s probably be something they keep in their house. But then there are people who say, ‘Why would you open it if you know you can’t get any more of it?’ So I don’t know. I don’t know what the buyer is going to do.”
Agrest expects Croizet Cognac Leonie 1858 to be available for purchase at FiDi Wine and Liquor in mid-July.
My name is Carey Vanderborg and I'm a journalist working in New York City. I love food, travel, craft beer, live music and writing about all of the above.