Last Christmas dozens of bottles worth an estimated $300,000 were stolen from famed restaurant, French Laundry. One month later, the collection, with the exception of 4 bottles, were recovered in NC. But, the thief still remains at large.
According to the sheriff’s department the recovery was brokered through a lawyer who was less than helpful. None of the three sheriffs that flew to NC to recover the collection were able to meet with the person who gave up the collection.
Despite the strange way the collection was recovered the sheriff’s department is still determined to find the culprit. “This is still a priority for our agency,” said sheriff’s Capt. Doug Pike. There have been musing around Napa Valley that the theft was an inside job, “That is one of the theories that we have contemplated as well,” Pike said, according to a SF Chronicle article. Interestingly, the alarm was not armed the night before the theft took place.
One piece of the puzzle not mentioned in any of the articles is if the collection was returned in the same condition in which it left French Laundry. As collectors know slight changes to temperature and the vibrations of a nationwide move can wreak havoc on a wine’s value. For example, if the vibrations of the move caused air to seep into the bottle and loosen the cork the wine could spoil and lose its value.
This is why having a wine insurance policy from Insure Your Wine.com is a smart move. While such a policy will not fend off possible thieves, it will protect you from theft as well as damage during transit in the unfortunate case that your collection is compromised. Having a policy to protect your investment can not only give you peace of mind, but can allow you to relax and enjoy your collection.