Bordeaux winemaker sets world record for Most Valuable Nose

Ilja Gort // Photo by Krijn van Noordwijk

Ilja Gort // Photo by Krijn van Noordwijk

Ilja Gort of Chateau La Tulipe, a Bordeaux winemaker, recently set a world record with his nose.

The Netherlands-born chateau owner insured his nose for 5 million euro with Lloyds of London back in 2008, and now set the Guinness World Record for the “most valuable nose.”

Gort isn’t the only person to insure body parts vital to their profession with Llyods—F1 driver Fernando Alonso insured his thumbs for 9 million pounds, Bruce Springsteen insured his voice for 3.5 million pounds, and Keith Richards insured his hands for 1.6 million dollars.

Gort explained his decision to seek insurance for his nose with a story of a common cold. “During the winter of ’08 my whole team got together for a major tasting of our wines. Because I had a cold and my nose was completely blocked, I wouldn’t have been able to tell the difference between furniture wax and washing up liquid. That made me realize how important my nose really is to me. I made some calculations as to what it would cost me if I were forced to stop working. When I saw the figure below the line, I immediately called Lloyds. I asked them to insure my precious smell organ for 10 million euro. Lloyds demanded an extensive scent test and all manner of scientific investigation to ascertain the value of my nose. Even though the results showed that my nose performs far above average, they refused to insure my nose for anything over 5 million euro, which I reluctantly accepted.”

However, the insurance policy came with a few fun-stifling stipulations: the wine producer can no longer go skiing, no longer appear as a “knife throwers assistant,” and is no longer allowed to get pregnant. Fortunately Gort’s nose is still highly successful at its job. Every year his wines are rewarded with an abundance of gold and silver medals.


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