Professional taste testers and scientists noticed an indescribable difference between the space-aged wine and the bottles kept in the vault
Credit: courtesy CHRISTIE’S

A luxury bottle of French wine is being auctioned for what the seller's estimate to be $1 million after it spent over a year in space.

Pétrus 2000 is one of 12 bottles sent to space from Nov. 2, 2019 to Jan. 14, 2021 aboard the International Space Station as a part of experiments conducted by Space Cargo Unlimited and will be auctioned off by Christie's.

The wine will be sold in a custom trunk inspired by Star Trek and includes a corkscrew made from a meteorite, Christie's shares in a press release. The buyer will also get the wine that was aged in a cellar to compare the difference should they decide to open the space-aged wine bottle.

Credit: courtesy CHRISTIE’S

The bottle was sold for $10,000 prior to its space journey.

Christie's Wine & Spirits Department International Director Tim Triptree told the Associated Press the price estimate is "in the region of $1 million" because of the anticipation appeal to wine connoisseurs, space buffs, and the wealthy.

"I would hope that they will decide to drink it, but maybe not immediately," Tiptree told the outlet. "It's at its peak drinking, but this wine will last probably another at least another two or three decades."

The wine was sent to space due to Space Cargo Unlimited's research on the future of agriculture.

"It is our conviction that there is no Planet B and we intend to pave the way for our future by leveraging microgravity and enticing accelerated natural evolutions in a spatial environment," Space Cargo Unlimited's CEO Nicolas Gaume said in the press release.

The money from the auction will be used to further fund space missions and agricultural and food research.

Credit: courtesy CHRISTIE’S

In March, 12 wine professionals and scientists met at the Institute for Wine and Vine Research in Bordeaux, France for a taste test between the Pétrus 2000 cellar wine and the space-aged wine.

Some noticed "remarkable differences in the color, aroma and taste components were noted," Christie's shared in the press release.

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Jane Anson, a writer with the wine publication Decanter, told Decanter there were "hard to describe" differences, but thought the space-aged wine tasted more mature.

"From previous experience of this wine, this particular bottle seems more evolved than I would expect from a 21-year-old bottle of Pétrus 2000," she said. "It is beautiful and nuanced, with fine tannins and a sense of energy, but has a clear difference in expression from the [earth] wine."