GD News

Forgeries in the World of Fine Wine

Art Insure spoke to one of Great Domaines’ account managers, wine expert Harry Overvoorde about the prevalence of forgeries in the world of fine wine. He had the following to say:

“Just as in the art world, forgery is a real problem with the finest wines.  The most expensive wines are so rarely drunk that very few can claim expertise on how they taste.  Only a brave guest will quibble at the flavour profile if a bottle of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti is opened by the host.”

Just as with art, there are many methods for spotting a fake, but none are fool-proof.  The best way to avoid paying over the odds for a forged bottle is simply to know exactly where it comes from.  Great Domaines only buys direct from the producer, meaning there is no chance of fake wine making it into our cellar.  The nature of the wine industry is such that trust is paramount, and doubly so in a market like South Africa.

Historically nascent markets show more susceptibility to forgeries, and an estimated 50% of Fine Wine traded in China is suspected to be fake.  The issue also exists in Europe and the US however, and has been a problem for as long as wine has been a traded asset.  In 1st Century Rome, Pliny the Elder lamented “Not even our nobility ever enjoys wines that are genuine”.  Great Domaines offers a direct link with the people that make the wine, the only way to guarantee provenance.”