Counterfeit Burgundy in the spotlight

Decanter has published an article entitled “Scandal of the century” focusing on alleged counterfeiter Rudy Kurniawan. They report he is charged with “faking rare Burgundy and Bordeaux” and is being held pending trial. An auction house representative, Decanter claims, “believes the Kurniawan saga has had an effect on buyers.” On the other hand, Maureen Downey, a fine-wine appraiser, is quoted as saying that “so very many are still in blissful denial.” Whereas previous episodes concerned old Bordeaux, this particular case revolves around “old wines from producers such as Roumier, Rousseau and Ponsot.” In a related interview in Bourgogne Aujourd’hui, Laurent Ponsot states that he has devoted 10% of his time in the past four years to tracking counterfeit wines. He states that “auction houses are not sufficiently careful in authenticating wines.” Ponsot admits, however, that there is at first “a certain glory” in having one’s wines copied. But then he asked himself how the person who opens a fake bottle would feel. He worries that legal action will stop one or two counterfeiters, but that “the system will continue,” noting that counterfeit money still exists. Ponsot says he has taken costly steps to insure that his bottles cannot be falsified, believing a buyer is willing to pay “a little more” to acquire an authentic wine.

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