A True Tall Tale

Douglas Hanson and Joseph Crowley
For Kim Bullock, size does matter - but not the way you're thinking! Kim Bullock is man and my double entendre exordium refers to his oenological bragging rights not the magnitude of his masculinity. For those of you frustrated with my predilection for sesquipedalian word play, please allow me to e'splain. 

You see this is a news story about a very rare bottle of wine that's wowing both the pros and the proletariat down on Wall Street. It seems an Australian  gentleman by the name of Kim Bullock has taken it upon himself to best the hitherto most bodacious bottle of spirits, a 4' 6'' tall bottle of California Cabernet Sauvignon from Beringer Vineyards, with a 6' 5'' tall bottle filled with the sumptuous nectar of Shiraz grapes from five fine vintners' vines from the land down under.

So what's this towering vessel of vino worth? Well let's break it down or perhaps it would be safer to say - let's add it up. The price of the label alone was $1,500. The price of the bottle was not revealed but I'd guesstimate that a German-made, one-off like that had to cost in the neighborhood of 10,0000 euros. The box used to safely fly the big bottle to the Big Apple and back (an $11,000 ticket, and that's as freight) cost $7,500! The stopper in the top, cut and hand carved from a Portuguese cork tree, cost another $3,500 (I pity the poor sommelier's assistant that has to pop that one without disturbing the sediment). And as for the luscious liquid within - the Albany-sized bottle, so named for it's owner's home town, holds the equivalent of almost 400 normal-sized bottles, adds another $8000 to $10,000. All told, not including incidentals, Mr. Bullock's out-of-pouch costs thus far are somewhere north of $50/60 grand!

All this, from a relatively small town liquor store owner, taking part in a Australian marketing campaign dubbed "G'day USA: Australian Week" Any chance Mr. Bullock's oversized advertising gimmick will pay off? Count on it! The Beringer Vineyards little 4.5-foot tall Maximus of Cabernet Sauvignon was sold by Sotheby's in '04 to a New Jersey buyer for over $55,000. And Mr. Bullock says he's already turned down an offer for $100,000 (must've been one of those overpaid capitalist Wall Street types).

So what's the moral of this true tall tale? Does size really matter? Is bigger always better? Are all records ment to be broken? Some will say yea and some will say nay to these questions of what's enough and when to say when. Me, I'm inclined to go along with David Hannum's (not P. T. Barnum's) wise words "There's a Sucker Born Every Minute" - so go ahead and build it bigger, there's always some fool with more cents than sense that'll buy it! 
For Kim Bullock, size does matter - but not the way you're thinking! Kim Bullock is man and my double entendre exordium refers to his oenological bragging rights not the magnitude of his masculinity. For those of you frustrated with my predilection for sesquipedalian word play, please allow me to e'splain. 

You see this is a news story about a very rare bottle of wine that's wowing both the pros and the proletariat down on Wall Street. It seems an Australian  gentleman by the name of Kim Bullock has taken it upon himself to best the hitherto most bodacious bottle of spirits, a 4' 6'' tall bottle of California Cabernet Sauvignon from Beringer Vineyards, with a 6' 5'' tall bottle filled with the sumptuous nectar of Shiraz grapes from five fine vintners' vines from the land down under.

So what's this towering vessel of vino worth? Well let's break it down or perhaps it would be safer to say - let's add it up. The price of the label alone was $1,500. The price of the bottle was not revealed but I'd guesstimate that a German-made, one-off like that had to cost in the neighborhood of 10,0000 euros. The box used to safely fly the big bottle to the Big Apple and back (an $11,000 ticket, and that's as freight) cost $7,500! The stopper in the top, cut and hand carved from a Portuguese cork tree, cost another $3,500 (I pity the poor sommelier's assistant that has to pop that one without disturbing the sediment). And as for the luscious liquid within - the Albany-sized bottle, so named for it's owner's home town, holds the equivalent of almost 400 normal-sized bottles, adds another $8000 to $10,000. All told, not including incidentals, Mr. Bullock's out-of-pouch costs thus far are somewhere north of $50/60 grand!

All this, from a relatively small town liquor store owner, taking part in a Australian marketing campaign dubbed "G'day USA: Australian Week" Any chance Mr. Bullock's oversized advertising gimmick will pay off? Count on it! The Beringer Vineyards little 4.5-foot tall Maximus of Cabernet Sauvignon was sold by Sotheby's in '04 to a New Jersey buyer for over $55,000. And Mr. Bullock says he's already turned down an offer for $100,000 (must've been one of those overpaid capitalist Wall Street types).

So what's the moral of this true tall tale? Does size really matter? Is bigger always better? Are all records ment to be broken? Some will say yea and some will say nay to these questions of what's enough and when to say when. Me, I'm inclined to go along with David Hannum's (not P. T. Barnum's) wise words "There's a Sucker Born Every Minute" - so go ahead and build it bigger, there's always some fool with more cents than sense that'll buy it!