France has found a new way to raise public revenue: selling off its wines.
The sale of 1,200 bottles of wine from Elysee Palace totaled 718,800 euros, or $935,374. That was nearly three times the estimate of 250,000 euros.
The sky-high prices were partly a reflection of the current collectibles boom and strong prices for vintage French wines, especially Burgundy. But more important for this sale was the seller—the French presidential palace.
The palace didn't build into its estimates any premium associated with selling wines straight from the Elysee. But the Elysee-premium turned out to be well over 50 percent. We can imagine the Chinese wine collectors presenting a bottle of Petrus at a business dinner and proudly proclaiming it was the former property of the French President. Now that is table power.