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In other years, bad weather, such as heavy late-season rains that bloat grapes with water or long hot, dry spells at harvest, means poor quality wines.
Some wine experts estimate that up to 5 percent of the fine wine sold today is fake.
The wines bore the names of top vineyards—along with Lafitte (which is now spelled “Lafite”), there were bottles from Châteaux d’Yquem, Mouton, and Margaux—and those initials, “Th.
J.” According to the catalogue, evidence suggested that the wine had belonged to Thomas Jefferson, and that the bottle at auction could “rightly be considered one of the world’s greatest rarities.” The level of the wine was “exceptionally high” for such an old bottle—just half an inch below the cork—and the color “remarkably deep for its age.” The wine’s value was listed as “inestimable.”Before auctioning the wine, Michael Broadbent, the head of Christie’s wine department, consulted with the auction house’s glass experts, who confirmed that both the bottle and the engraving were in the eighteenth-century French style.
Scientists are optimistic about the techniques as a means to combat fraud in rare foods and beverages.
In their leading research, Jones and colleagues found that radioactive carbon dioxide produced from atomic bomb tests in the atmosphere absorbed by grapes can be used to accurately determine wine vintages.
The radioactive decay of tritium may be classified as beta decay (β decay).
The nuclear reaction may be written as follows: Each such reaction produces helium-3, an electron, and a nearly undetectable electron antineutrino, along with about 18.6 ke V of energy.
The story centers on a bottle of 1787 Chateau Lafite, reputedly owned by Thomas Jefferson, which was consigned to Christie’s Auction House.. J., was scheduled to be auctioned on December 5, 1985 by Christie’s Wine Director, Michael Broadbent, the “public face” of wine auctions of the time.
The consignor was a supposedly German-born wine collector Hardy Rodenstock, whose real name, Meinhard Görke, and country of birth, Poland, only become public years later after a former FBI investigator uncovered the truth.
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It had no label, but etched into the glass in a spindly hand was the year 1787, the word “Lafitte,” and the letters “Th.