3 Tons of Cabernet Grapes or $15,000 — Which Would You Take?

American banknotesDuring my visit to Reno last week, I was inundated with TV commercials and newspaper ads promoting the Silver Legacy Resort’s year-long “$500,000 You’ll Take the Cash Anyway Giveaway.”

Casino visitors qualify for the giveaways through daily drawings. Currently, the big prize encompasses three tons of Cabernet Sauvignon grapes, eight empty oak barrels and a “how to” book on winemaking — something that, theoretically, nobody would possibly want.

The “punch line” of each giveaway is, “We figured you’d take the cash anyway.” In this case, the cash amount being offered is $15,000.

Certainly 99% of people would do exactly that — accept the cash prize, pay the taxes due on the spot, and keep the rest.

But I’m not among that 99%. I would actually have to give the non-cash prize package some serious consideration in this case.

Of course, the first thing I’d want to know is where those Cabernet Sauvignon grapes came from. If they were grown in the Napa Valley, or in the Alexander Valley area of Sonoma County, or in certain other Cab-friendly pockets of the wine world… count me in!

On the other hand, if they were grown in an area that is not known for high-quality Cabernet grapes, the cash would start looking a whole lot more enticing.

Next, I’d want to know what kind of oak barrels were being offered. New? Previously filled? French? American?

And finally, I’d want to make sure one of my winemaker friends were available for a small side job, because no “how to” book is going to turn me into a winemaker quickly enough to ensure a top-quality finished product.

Yeah, if we were talking high-quality Napa Valley grapes from a good vintage, I might just skip the cash.

At the very least, it would be awfully tempting.

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To learn more about Silver Legacy’s “You’ll Take the Cash Anyway Giveaway,” go to: silverlegacy.com.

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Posted in Wine in the Glass
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