WINE SCANDALS – Did you know these scandals that shook the wine world?

Hi my name is Carter limbaum I'm a Master of wine and today I'm going to Talk about scandals but not the UK's Party Gate scandal or the Oscars slap Gate incident instead I'm going to focus On the biggest wine scandals so let's Scandalize is that a word anyways [Music] Looking back at the history of wine you Will find quite a lot of different Scandals but I've selected three that Really left a mark in the wine world the First one is the so-called anti-free Scandal it is easy to forget nowadays That there was a time when producers in Northern Europe really struggled to Ripen grapes some crafty or rather Terminal wine makers came up with the Idea of adding diethylene glycol to Their Wines in order to make them taste Sweet without having to go through the Arduous process of you know letting the Grapes ripen that Ling liquid can also Be used as antifreeze and it can be Poisonous if consumed in larger Quantities but for those wineries it was An easy way to increase profits this Became common practice amongst a small Number of wineries in Austria and some Of the tainted wine was also sold in Bulk to bottlers in Germany they managed To keep it secret for years but the Scandal unfolded when one producer who Only owned a small tractor tried to

Claim a vast amount of antifreeze as a Business expense that's so stupid Really stupid the reaction in the media Was extreme and the story went all Around the globe it was on the first Page of the New York Times clickol Became the word of the year in 1985 in Germany and Austrian wine was banned in Several countries including the UK the First time I saw a reference to the Scandal was in The Simpsons episode the Crypts of Wrath when two French Winemakers put antifreeze into their Wine and then made Bart drink it It is customary for children to take a Little while now and then yeah but it's Got antifreeze in there drink it oh as a Result of all the unwanted detention Experts of Austrian once dropped by 90 And also the reputation of German wines Was really tarnished the dangers of the Ethylene glycol were largely overstated As most wines didn't contain levels that Could really cause death or even really Cause any major health risks the highest Level detected in the wine was 48 grams Per liter and that was in a very sling Tokenbergland the happy end with the Story is that the Austrian wine industry Enacted very strict rules and has spent A lot of effort and time into rebuilding Its reputation and they are today Producing amazing wines all without Glycol let's move on to another Scandal

That was even turned into a book and I Think there's even a film on the way the Jefferson bottles this is one of those Cannons that really highlights how cake The wine industry is sometimes and how Crazy this world can be let's start with A question if a German music manager With a questionable passport approach You offering you some bottles of 1787 Lafitte that were also owned by Thomas Jefferson without disclosing his sources Would you spend six figures on them Probably not but this is exactly how the Story starts one bottle of this wine was Submitted to an auction at Christie's in 1985 and it was sold for a Record-breaking 156 000 US dollars to the Forbes family but Let's start at the beginning the music Manager was called Hardy ownstock and he Became famous for locating the world's Rarest wines he had these exclusive and Lavish wine tastings where you open Bottles from the best wineries going Back to the 18th century and he invited Tasters like Kansas Robinson and Robert Parker he claimed that the bottles were Discovered in Paris and that the Inscription Lafitte thj referred to Chateau lefeit and Thomas Jefferson I Mean Thomas Jefferson was a wine lover So that part of the story checks out but The rest really doesn't experts from the Thomas Jefferson Foundation raised

Serious doubts about the authenticity of Those bottles and think about this how Many bottles in your collections have Your initials engraved into them Have you ever seen anybody do that in The whole world I haven't the fourth family did not care Too much and they start the bottle in Terrible condition so that at some point The shrunken just dropped back into The bottle destroying whatever was left Off the wine the story became Interesting though when in 1988 the Famous businessman Bill Cook bought some Of those Jefferson bottles for his own Collection he filed a lawsuit in 2006 After realizing he had been defrauded And spent lots of money on private Investigators what followed were Different trials and all of the accused Claiming that they did not know what They were doing what I can definitely Tell you after diving deep into this Topic is that rodenstock had his hands On way too many crazy Wines in large Format bottles for them all to be real Bigwig's private investigators claimed That the bottles were probably old but That the Engravings which were really Important because they suggested that it Was Lafitte owned by Thomas Jefferson That they were added with the Modern Dental drill so here you go that's how You make the most expensive bottle of

Wine in the world you might think that People learn from their mistakes and That the industry as a whole became more Careful and less naive but think again Because here comes the story of Dr Conti Himself Rudy koneawa what happens if you Mix three quarters of old Bordeaux and One quarter of California Cabernet in Rudy's lab that was the recipe for one Of the greatest wines of all time the 1945 mutton Rothschild he infiltrated The High Roller wine collector scene and Sold millions of dollars worth of Unicorn wines wines that are really Really rare or that don't exist they Turned this whole story into a Documentary called sour grapes and I Would really recommend watching it Because it's fascinating how Unsuspecting these millionaire friends Of his are so Rudy did not only drink Expensive wines with his friends he also Made them in his home without anybody Realizing it creating recipes for Classic wines most of Rudy's wines were Sold through an upstart auction house Called Echo marrow and Condit That Grew Into one of the biggest auction houses In the world during this period it might Be surprising that these amateur wine Collectors fell for this but what is Really stunning to me is that the wine Industry did not catch on to him faster Because Rudy wasn't some kind of

Mastermind who knew everything about Wine he actually made some huge mistakes He saw 1982 leper which the shuttle Itself identified as fake eight Magnums Of 1947 LaFleur even though there were Only five Magnums made that year he also Sold some 1923 George rumiere bonma but The problem with that is the domain only Started making one in 1924. it really Hit the fan when he tried to sell a Collection of domain ponzos From the vintages between 1945 and 1971 And Logan Paul showed up at the auction And told everyone that they only started Making this wine in 1982 when this Became public of randburg coke realized That he had also bought wines from Rudy And sued him Rudy was arrested in 2012 And the images from his home former Absolutely crazy there's a whole library Of different labels Corks And different Bottles and tools to be able to Manufacture great wines and there were Even bottles sitting in the sink ready To be relabeled and remade into the next Unicorn wines Rudy was sentenced to 10 Years in prison and was released in 2020 And deported to his home country Indonesia the story could end here but What is very much unclear today is how Many of those millions and millions of Dollars worth of fake wines that he Manufactured are still in circulation And are being sold and bought at

Auctions or through other channels today These incidents did not really have a Very strong impact on the Fine Wine Market as a whole and I really wish that Producers and retailers work together in Order to combat fraud and counterfeiting Okay this was a bit of a different video But I really enjoyed researching those Stories and I hope you enjoyed listening To them if you like this video then Please like it down here subscribe to my Channel if you haven't done so already My question of the day is what is your Favorite wine Scandal let me know down Below I hope I see you guys again soon Until then stay Thirsty [Music]