Royals, Obamas Sip $1,000 Vino

Buckingham serves its best for Americans who appreciate wine.

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Finally, after two straight presidents who didn't appreciate the taste of a fine French burgundy, Buckingham Palace tonight had a chance to put on the Ritz for a first family who enjoy a long dinner and luscious wine.

Most notable from the wine cellars of the famous palace: A Echezeaux Grand Cru 1990, Domaine de la Romanee-Conti, that goes for $1,000 - $1,700 per bottle in the United States.

There were a bunch of other wines, like Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin champagne and a very nice $170 1963 port President and first lady Michelle Obama, who are noted for dinner dates at Washington's finest restaurants, have probably had before. [See photos of Michelle Obama.]

But the Echezeaux Grand Cru 1990 is a different thing altogether, something even reviewer Robert Parker says is a rare treat for the super rich. He gave it 93 points in 1992 and, of course, it's only supposed to get better in the bottle.

Check out his comments:

93 points, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

January 1992

The Grands Echezeaux is broader than the Echezeaux, with more black-raspberry and black-cherry elements in its smoky, exotic nose, as well as a longer, more opulent and fleshy finish. Slightly superior to the Echezeaux, its lifeline should be similar - between 1995-2010. The DRC 1990s, all of which were bottled in April/May, are among the deepest colored wines from this domaine that I have tasted in the last decade. Moreover, they are firmly structured, with significant tannins from both the vintage and from the aging in 100% new oak barrels. For the fortunate few who have had the discretionary income to afford the other great vintages of the DRC from the eighties, 1980, 1983, 1985, 1988, and 1989, the question is - are the 1990s superior? I am not sure they are any better than the 1980s, 1985, and 1988s, but they undoubtedly represent a classic, concentrated, long-lived style of wine. Moreover, all of these wines should have a more graceful evolution and broader window of drinkability than the tannic 1988s, as well as potentially greater longevity than the succulent and opulent 1985s. All of these offerings are outstanding, with that tell-tale complex, exotic fragrance that the DRC routinely achieves.