When people think of expensive wines, they typically think of a bottle that costs more than $75, but when we’re talking about the most expensive wines in the world, that’s not even close.
Depending on the type of wine you like, and the brand, you can usually find a good bottle at the grocery store, or your local wine shop, for between $20-30, with the better wines being slightly more expensive at maybe $50-65 per bottle.
If you are looking at larger bottles, special edition wines, low production wines, wines from smaller wineries, then the price may be a little more expensive. Small wineries have higher production costs which can lead to a higher price per bottle, but typically you’re getting a better quality product that has been produced with care.
At Hope Family Wines the prices of our wines can range anywhere from $16 for our Liberty School Cabernet Sauvignon 2021, all the way up to $194 for a magnum bottle of our Austin Hope Graciano 2021. But keep in mind, a magnum bottle is twice as much wine as a traditional bottle, which is where the high price tag comes from.
We try to keep our prices reasonable considering the quality of our wines, but when it comes to expensive wine, our wines don’t come anywhere near some of the most expensive bottles of wine in the world.
What Are Some The Most Expensive Wines in the World?
If you think $100 is expensive for a bottle of wine, then this list below is going to blow your mind. There are some bottles of wine that can sell for upwards of $20,000+ per bottle on the retail market (if you can find it), and depending on the vintage and the rarity, even more at auction.
In fact, a 1945 bottle of Romanee-Conti (which is on our list below) once sold for over $550,000 at auction… That $100 bottle of wine doesn’t seem so bad now does it?
Let’s take a look at some of the most expensive bottles of wine, based on their retail price (not their vintage auction price).
Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Romanee-Conti Grand Cru
Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Romanee-Conti Grand Cru is considered one of the most prestigious wines in the world with collectors and wine lovers alike longing to be able to try it at least once in their lifetime.
This wine hails from the Burgundy region of France at the small vineyard of Romanee-Conti. This vineyard is known for producing small batches of some of the most exclusive wines in the world. In addition to the limited batches produced, as well as the prestige associated with the vineyard itself, the pinot noir vines at this vineyard are known as some of the oldest vines in Burgundy which lends itself to the incredible flavors.
Combine these factors with the incredible attention to detail during the winemaking process, and you have one of the most expensive bottles of wine anywhere in the world. A bottle of this wine will run you between $10,000 to $20,000 at retail, with some bottles reaching up to $50,000 on the secondary market (for more recent vintages).
Screaming Eagle Cabernet Sauvignon
Produced in Napa Valley, California, Screaming Eagle Cabernet Sauvignon isn’t quite as expensive as the Romanee-Conti Grand Cru mentioned above, but even at retail it can cost as much as a small used car.
Most of the wines on this list are expensive for similar reasons, and Screaming Eagle Cabernet Sauvignon is no different. With a limited production and a small acreage for growing, this winery only produces a few hundred cases of wine each year, making it highly desired, but hard to get.
Add in the fact that the Napa region has a unique climate, along with the meticulous attention to detail, not to mention a cult following that has developed over the years, and it’s no surprise why a bottle of this wine will run you anywhere between $3,000 to $6,000.
Margaux of Chateau Margaux is another very expensive bottle of wine that can cost anywhere between $800 and $2,500 per bottle depending on the vintage.
Chateau Margaux estate is one of the prestigious First Growth estates in Bordeaux, France which recognizes its historical importance as well as consistent production of quality wines. The estate has been making exceptional wines for several centuries and has been associated with exceptional winemaking since the 16th century which adds to its allure.
The demand for this incredible wine far outweighs the limited production each year which means it is very hard to get and thus can be quite expensive (if you can find it).
The winemaking at Château Margaux is characterized by careful grape selection, traditional vinification techniques, and a commitment to expressing the unique terroir of the estate. Chateau Margaux strives for balance and longevity in its wines.
Petrus wine is produced at the Chateau Petrus in the Bordeaux region of France, just like the Margaux wine above. This small vineyard sits on 28 acres of land and exclusively produces this wine made from 100% merlot grapes. With vines over 40 years old, and exceptional terroir, this wine exhibits intense flavors, velvety textures, and the ability to age gracefully over several decades.
If you can find a bottle of Petrus at retail you should expect to spend at least $2,500 per bottle, but more realistically you’re looking at between $3,500 to $7,500.
In addition to the consistent quality and aging potential, the scarcity of production also lends itself to the high price tag. On average, only 30,000 bottles of Petrus are produced each year, which means it is extremely rare and hard to find at retail.
Domaine Leroy Musigny Grand Cru
If you’re looking to drop the price of a brand new car on a bottle of wine, then Domaine Leroy Musigny Grand Cru is what you’re looking for.
At over $40,000 retail, for a bottle of this wine (with prices sometimes reaching over $100,000 per bottle with markups) this bottle of wine is definitely reserved for the elite and special gatherings. This wine comes from the Musigny vineyard in the Burgundy region of France. It is one of the most renowned and sought after wines in the world.
The limestone rich soils, cool climate, and optimal sun exposure create the perfect terroir for the development of the grapes. This wine is made using traditional winemaking techniques and Domaine Leroy is very hands on in her approach to winemaking and practices biodynamic farming methods which focus on organic and sustainable viticulture.
The extreme low production of these wines is also one of the factors that has lead to the high price tag. In some years only 600 bottles of Domaine Leroy Musigny Grand Cru have been produced, leaving many collectors hoping to win the lottery.
This is one wine most people will probably never have a chance to taste in their lifetime.
While the wines above are the top of the expensive wine market, there are still a lot of expensive wines that can cost well over $1000, however there are also a lot of more affordable wines that probably taste just as good to most casual wine drinkers.
If you don’t have a money tree in your backyard and don’t live for your next glass of wine, then you’re probably better off saving that money and spending it on something more practical. But if you hit the lottery and want to see what all the fuss is about, by all means, buy that bottle of Domaine Leroy Musigny Grand Cru instead of that BMW you were looking at!