By LAWRENCE TAN
For approximately US$33,000 per bottle, you can now get your hands on one of 10 bottles of vintage 1907 Heidsieck & Co Monopole Champagne, that have been ageing gracefully in the depths of the Baltic Sea for the past 82 years, at the Ritz-Carlton Moscow.
The vintage cases of bubbly were among cargoes of Cognac, Burgundy and Champagne recovered from a long-lost shipwreck by Swedish divers off the coast of Finland in July 1997.
But while the Cognac and the Burgundy did not survive the years of being submerged in the ocean depths, the 2,000 bottles of Heidsieck & Co Monopole Champagne were remarkably well preserved.
The unfortunate ship in question was a Swedish ketch called The Jonkoping that was carrying cargo bound for delivery to Tsar Nicolas II in St. Petersburg, Russia before it was sunk by a German U-22 submarine off the coast of Finland in the wee hours of a November morning in 1916.