Wine tycoon Bernard Magrez has run afoul of journalists by offering them what looks to be a classic bribe. Decanter reports that Magrez and his partner in wine, French actor Gerard Depardieu hosted journalists at a press lunch at the Alain Ducasse restaurant at the Hotel Plaza Athénée in Paris on March 26. At the end of the lunch, journalists were giving a press kit and a box that contained a Cartier watch worth $2,641.
After what must have been some interesting moments of desire versus ethics, many of the journalists decided to either donate or return the watches. Magrez told Decanter he wasn't trying to buy good press, he was just using the watch as a way to commemorate the special occasion. The French website Backchich certainly isn't buying that. In their article titled The Advantages of Being a Wine Journalist, they feature a cartoon of a woman dressed in sparkling jewelry with a note pad and a glass of wine. My French is a bit rusty but I the caption roughly translates to this wine is rich and generous just like Mr. Depardieu.