Rapper, music producer and Champagne executive Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson returned to Rodeo Uncorked! Champion Wine Auction and Dinner Feb. 27, dropping six figures on a bottle of Texas wine. That winning bid helped the annual Houston event, which supports Texas youth programs, raise $2.73 million, with $2.57 million of that coming from the live auction.
"Our 2022 Rodeo Uncorked! Champion Wine Auction was a huge success, with the Grand Champion Wine setting a Rodeo [Uncorked!] record of $250,000," Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo president and CEO Chris Boleman told Wine Spectator. The Livestock Show and Rodeo has been highlighting Texas farming and raising money for charity for 90 years. Before the actual rodeo each year, the event hosts a wine competition, a food competition and a charity wine auction.
The auction’s top-selling lot, a case of J. Lohr Vineyards Cuvée Pau Paso Robles 2017 plus four 9-liter etched bottles, fetched $250,000. Another top lot ($200,000) featured a case and four 9-liter etched bottles of 2018 Cabernet Franc from Nice Winery in Central California's Paicines AVA.
Jackson donated bottles of his Champagne label Le Chemin du Roi to the event. He also placed the winning bid of $125,000 for a lot featuring Hye Meadow Winery's 2017 Boooom red blend from the Texas High Plains AVA.
Shortly after outbidding the competition, Jackson tweeted, "I finally won a bid at the [wine] auction, [you're] a nobody 'till you win a bid at the [wine] auction. Now I have a bottle of wine that costs more [than a] Rolls Royce."
Since its founding in 1932, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo has committed more than $550 million to Texas youth education.
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