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Dear Christies Auction House.....

Stardate -317404.87

Dear Christies Auction House,

First of all, congratulations on securing the auction rights to what looks like the entire contents of the Starship Enterprise. I was disappointed to note that you're not selling off any of the more impressive hardware. I've been trying to get some of those "swissssh, swissssh" doors in my place for a long time, but no one seems to want to backorder them for the next 200 years.

But I'm not writing you today about doors. No, I'm much more interested in wine. Specifically, I have a number of ch_labarre_2067.jpgquestions about your upcoming offering of two bottles of 2267 Chateau Picard Labarre.

First of all, your auction catalog does not list an expected price for these bottles. I'd like to know whether it will be worth my while to even contemplate bidding on them. After all the 2005 Margaux futures my accountant just told me to buy, my pool of play money isn't at its usual depth. Do you think they'll stay in the six figure range?

Of course, price really isn't the most important thing here, so let's get down to some more serious questions. First of all, those bottles you've got on the web site look totally empty. I know that there are often issues with low fill levels on old wines, but with wines from the future? I would expect them to be in pristine condition, especially since wine storage techniques have just GOT to be better in the 22nd century, don't they? Also, can you tell me where exactly the Labarre appellation will be in the United Federation of Eurasian states?

I know your item dossiers don't usually include such information, but if one of your appraisers would mind chipping in his or her opinion about what these wines might pair well with in terms of food, I would really appreciate it. If I'm going to spend a couple of decades inventing and programming my food synthesizer, I want to make sure I get it right when it comes to these wines.

Finally, and don't get me wrong -- I'm not saying this is going to affect my buying decision -- but do you happen to know what score Parker gave this wine, and in particular what his thoughts were on it at -250 years old?

Thanks very much for your indulgence on these issues. I very much look forward to the auction, and pending your answers, getting a chance to own a piece of oenological history. Er, future. Um...whatever.


Alder Yarrow

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For those who care, the background on where this wine comes from. Thanks yet again to Jack (who may just land a job as my humor editor).

The winemaker in his vineyards.

Photo: Paramount Pictures.

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