A PR stunt that would see the world's most expensive cocktail in the world served to New Zealand millionaire James Manning nearly backfired for Crown Casino in Australia, as the casino nearly lost $32 million in a scam.
The incident occurred at the Club 23 bar inside Crown Casino in Australia in 2013. New Zealand millionaire and gambler James Manning was set to set a Guinness World record for having the most expensive cocktail. The drink was dubbed "The Winston" and is a cocktail that uses 858-vintage Croizet Cuvee Leonie cognac, a very rare and expensive drink.
Manning went to the casino, but had ulterior motives. Once inside the casino, Manning conspired with a VIP services manager at the casino to game the system. He proceeded to go on an incredible "lucky" streak wherein he won $32 million on just eight hands. The winning hands were suspicious, so the casino staff decided to take a closer look at the security tape, wherein they realized the VIP manager was tipping off Manning on the hands.
Once the ruse was discovered, Manning and his family were kicked out of the casino in the middle of the night. Fortunately for him, the casino's management decided not to press charges.
As for the record setting drink, Crown Casino opted to find another buyer to purchase the beverage and pull the stunt off (although the drinker did not actually pay the bill).
The full story about this heist gone wrong can be read at the Sydney Morning Herald.