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Serious Ballers Get Their Wine At The Lyric Opera Wine Auction

By John Lenart in Food on Feb 6, 2015 5:05PM

One of the things I really love about wine is that it’s convivial. It’s part of sharing meals with family and friends, sitting with loved ones on a nice spring evening or telling friends about this great value find you just discovered. But let’s face it; part of the wine game is anything but that. It’s exclusive, outrageously priced and virtually untouchable for all but a very privileged few. Many wine lovers hate that part of the industry. Yet, while we hate it, you've got to admit there’s a certain voyeuristic thrill found in reading about or even seeing photos of these “Baller” wines and events.

While out of reach of many of us, if you have the means there's a thrilling “Baller” wine event right around the corner. So get out your evening gown or spruce up your tux because the Lyric Opera of Chicago Wine Auction is this weekend. Recognized by The Wine Spectator as one of the Top Ten Charity wine auctions, this event, held every three years, has been a tradition since 1988. The event takes place this Saturday, Feb. 7 at 5:30 p.m. on the Lyric stage. The evening kicks off with a silent auction and reception where you can bid on slightly less “Baller” lots like Lot 122, a single bottle of Harlan Estate 2001 (Estimated value $1,100).

After the silent auction concludes, guests will dine on dinner by Chef Thomas Lents of Sixteen. After dinner the main auction kicks off.

The auction is run by Hart Davis Hart Wine Co., one of the world's leading wine auction houses. During the auction you can bid on some of the most “Baller” wines ever produced. Take for instance Lot 3, one bottle each of Château Lafite Rothschild 1961, Château Latour 1961, Château Margaux 1961 and Château Mouton Rothschild 1961 for an estimated $11,800. Or perhaps, to match your “Baller” status you prefer big bottles? Well how about Lot 20, six magnums of Château Latour 2005 for an estimated $15,000?

But there's more than just wine. Maybe you'd rather bid on dinner for eight at the three Michelin Star restaurant Grace, featuring Harlan Estate wines paired to the menu by Harlan Estate's Director Don Weaver, along with a double magnum of 2010 Harlan Estate for you to take home? There are also fabulous travel packages including bird hunting in Argentina, an African Safari with a world renowned wildlife photographer or arctic cruises. Finally you can bid on unique, one-of-a-kind items like an Imperial of 2012 “SONG,” the Lyric Opera commemorative wine. This Napa cabernet sauvignon blend is created exclusively for The Lyric Opera by Hall Wines. This is the only imperial ever produced and you could own it. How “Baller” is that?

You can experience all of this for the ticket price of $1500 per person. If perhaps you're unavailable because you're jet-setting in Monaco you can bid online here. Fill your cellar with “Baller” wines from the Baller event this weekend.