Ill Kiwi fails to finish $15,000 cocktail

KERRY M CBRIDE
Last updated 05:00 09/02/2013
Meredith Parkin
CHRIS SKELTON/Fairfax NZ

PRETTY PENNY: Glengarry fine wine consultant Meredith Parkin admires a 1995 bottle of Krug Clos d’Ambonnay, for sale at $7700.

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Connoisseurs could spend $15,000 on a cocktail in Melbourne, or save the plane trip and buy a $7700 bottle of champagne in Thorndon.

New Zealand businessman James Manning took a few sips of the world's most expensive cocktail on Thursday night at exclusive Melbourne venue Bar 23, and declared it to be "good".

The pricey refreshment earned the bar, and the overwhelmed businessman, plenty of plaudits and a chance at a Guinness World Record.

The cocktail, containing two nips of an 1858 vintage Croizet cognac at $7370 a shot, and involving the efforts of a barman and two chefs over two days, was left largely undrunk by Mr Manning, who was not feeling well.

Made by barman Joel Heffernan, the cocktail also included Grand Marnier Quintessence, and was named the "Winston" after Croizet enthusiast and former British prime minister Winston Churchill.

It was presented with chocolate nutmeg dust, essence of poppy seed and rose, and hints of coconut, passionflower and oranges.

For aficionados who do not favour cognac, or cannot stretch to $15,000, wine seller Glengarry Thorndon has a bottle of 1995 Krug Clos d'Ambonnay Champagne on its shelves for $7700.

Fine wines manager Meredith Parkin said the store did not usually stock the rare wine, but it was left there after a tasting when the menu was changed.

"The kicking-off point for Krug is about $400, but this is extremely special. There's not a massive demand for it, though."

Such bottles were usually bought for special occasions, although for very rare wines they would get the occasional collector, Ms Parkin said.

"People occasionally inquire about them for things like coming-of-age gifts. It's certainly not every week, though."

The store's next most expensive bottle came in at well under half the price, at $2330.

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- The Dominion Post

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