The Herschel Museum of Astronomy invites bids for rare Spanish wine made to celebrate the launch of the Herschel and Planck space telescopes.
You couldn’t make it up. The granddaughter of a famous Spanish winemaker becomes a telecommunications engineer, specialising in space satellites, works for four years with the European Space Agency developing the world’s most powerful infrared telescope (the Herschel satellite) and the Planck space observatory, then asks her family to dedicate the Reserve 2004 vintage to their successful launch in 2009. Labels bearing images of both satellites were duly commissioned by a local Spanish artist and the Herschel-Planck Ontañón Rioja, the Reserve 2004, was released for sale.
Made with 95% Tempranillo grapes and 5% Graciano, the stylish wine has cherry and berryfruit undertones with enough mineral tannins and oak to have aged beautifully. The Herschel Museum of Astronomy has located two of the last-remaining bottles which it is auctioning off, both to the general public and wine connoisseurs alike.
Interested parties can enter a silent bid on-line or on paper in the museum. Bids are being taken for the Herschel bottle, the Planck bottle, or both together. The auction closes on 24 December 2018, with the winning bidders being notified early in 2019. (Please fill in the form and email your bid to the Museum Administrator)
All funds raised will go towards the conservation of objects at the museum.
Leticia Perez Cuevas has returned to the family vineyard and makes wine. A colleague at the European Space Agency, Ms Luke Lucas, who initially worked with Leticia on the Herschel Planck telescopes, is now its Mars Express, Mission Planning and Spacecraft Operations Engineer. Luke will share her background and pioneering work when she presents the Herschel Society lecture on 7 September 2018.