Naples Winter Wine Festival 2011: Lots to Offer
Proving that world-class wine pairs well with life’s pleasures, the 2012 Naples Winter Wine Festival is offering dynamic, one-of-a-kind auction lots that feature Hollywood entertainment, high fashion, world travel and elite recreation.
This year’s offerings at the 12th annual event that funds local children’s charities include the creme de la creme of the wine world: all five Bordeaux First Growths—Chateaux Lafite, Latour, Haut Brion, Margaux and Mouton—plus large-format bottles and collections of Super Tuscans from Italy, Argentina’s elite Pinot Noirs, and Napa’s, Sonoma’s and Oregon’s finest.
Wine aficionados will be drawn to a novel wine lot based around celebrating the 30 year anniversary of the magnificent 1982 vintage, which features a six-course dinner at Naples’ Old Collier Golf Club for five couples hosted by Rosann & Bill Nunnelly. Among the top wines from this celebrated vintage to be served are Château Lafite Rothschild, Château Beychevelle, Château Calon Segur, Château Cheval Blanc, Château Haut-Brion, Château Latour and Château Lynch Bages.
The Good Life meets The Good Wife
Hollywood hits big this year at the auction with three lots offering walk-on roles or set visits to some of television’s top-rated shows.
Bob Clifford, who, with his wife Joan, is chairing the 2012 auction, says “One of the things the chairs bring to the table is their Rolodex.” The couple procured a walk-on role on the popular television show, The Good Wife, about a Chicago lawyer. Bob Clifford, a Chicago lawyer, explains, “Joan and I are longtime friends and supporters of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and his brother Ari, represents the show.”
Napa Valley’s Colgin Cellars, an American idol among wines, combines one large-format bottle each of its 2004 Estate Syrah and 2005 Colgin Cariad Napa Valley Red Wine with a trip for two couples to Los Angeles for the 2012 American Idol finale. Winners of another lot will take home 3-liter bottles of Napa’s Gargiulo Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon and visit the set of television’s Two and A Half Men with a private tour by actor Jon Cryer. The visit is part of a first-class, six-night trip to Southern California for two couples.
For those who prefer a different kind of action with their fine wine (or bourbon), a four-day trip to the 2012 Kentucky Derby is up for auction along with some large-format bottles—etched and part of a limited edition collection—and a case of 2009 Stonestreet Christopher’s Cabernet Sauvignon. The lot includes two specially designed Derby hats, a bourbon tasting, a visit to a prestigious horse farm, attendance at the Lexington Cancer Foundation’s Wine Auction—even breakfast with a star horse. The lot is being offered by vintner Jess Jackson’s widow, Barbara Banke.
Another kind of race is featured in a lot that combines two six-liter bottles of Napa Valley’s 2007 Lail Vineyards J. Daniel Cuvée Cabernet Sauvignon with a trip to Pebble Beach and Carmel, Calif., for four, packed with recreational fun such as VIP tickets to the Rolex Revival Monterey Historical Car Races at Laguna Seca, a VIP guided trip to the Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance, tickets to The Quail Motorsports Show and golf with Indy 500 winner Danny Sullivan at Monterey Peninsula Country Club.
Golf is also on the menu in Oregon’s Domaine Serene auction lot, which combines a 3-liter bottle of 2005 Domaine Serene Monogram Pinot Noir and 18 additional bottles to enjoy during an Oregon adventure for three nights at the winery and another three nights at Bandon Dunes Cottage Grove, including four rounds of golf per guest.
The Winner Wears Oscar
For stylish wine auction bidders, there is a trunk full of enticements: tickets to an Oscar de la Renta Runway show in New York, including a “meet and greet” with the designer, and a $20,000 shopping spree to be split among the winners at Marissa Collections in Naples; and a private cocktail reception at the Chanel boutique in Beverly Hills and a Beverly Hills shopping excursion with Los Angeles stylist Alicia Belle. There’s also a visit to Augustina’s Carmel, Calif., gallery of wearable art where lot winners will meet the designers and have an item custom-made for them, in addition to other goodies.
Planes, Trains and Automobiles
Among the 67 lots this year, exotic travel is also up for grabs, including a private jet tour around the world with stops in China and Moscow, a yacht cruise through the Baltic countries in Northern Europe for six couples, a barge trip through France for three couples and wine adventures in Tuscany, Burgundy, Hawaii, Paris, Dominican Republic and Napa Valley.
A truly unique item at this year’s auction is a 2012 Mercedes SLS AMG Roadster. Auction chair Bob Clifford says, “It’s not on the market yet—no one else in the U.S. will be driving this new automobile yet but the winner.”