BY MARK KEAST

In celebration of his 50th birthday (December 4), billionaire rapper and entrepreneur Jay Z (a.k.a. Shawn Carter) this week announced he’s attached his brand to D’Ussé 1969 Anniversaire, a premium cognac (higher quality French brandy). Just don’t rush to the LCBO to buy a bottle.

According to reporting by ROBB Report, the single barrel, 100 percent Grand Champagne Cognac – discovered by Jay-Z and cellar master Michel Casavecchiahas – has been aging for decades in the prestigious Château de Cognac cellars in France.

There was only enough liquid for 150-200 crystal decanters.  The rapper is releasing 50 (individually numbered) to friends and family at this point. Hova’s D’Ussé Cognac, which Jay Z owns along with Bacardi, will then release what’s left on a more widespread scale in places like New York, Paris and L.A., retailing at $5,000 per bottle.

Image sources: Greg Alders/D’Ussé/Instagram @dussecognac

ART BASEL MIAMI

The annual modern and contemporary art festival, featuring work from over 260 galleries from 35 countries, wraps up today. Last year over 83,000 attended. Basel, Switzerland, was the first in the series, held every June, showcasing over 4,000 works of art. Basel also holds festivals in Buenos Aires, in September, and Hong Kong, scheduled for March of next year.

David Nolan Gallery. Image: Art Basel.

Image: Art Basel

Image: Art Basel

Blum and Poe gallery. Image: Art Basel

A Gentil Carioca gallery. Image: Art Basel

It’s the largest art fair in the U.S., but it’s also a major social happening in Miami. In addition to converting the new Miami Beach Convention Centre into a massive art gallery, art fairs and social events pop up all over the city, making it one large progressive art show. Below are pics from the Draya Michele + Mint Swim + STYLE X event at the Mondrian Miami.

Images by Eva-Maria Guggenberger.

MCLAREN ANNOUNCES NEW HYBRID SUPERCAR

The auto industry is barreling towards hybrid fleets, with the British automaker McLaren announcing this week that its next supercar will be a hybrid (all-wheel drive with plug-in hybrid powertrain) capable of going from 0-to-60 mph in 2.3 seconds.

The company said they expect the car offer somewhere between 15 and 20 miles of purely electric driving. More details on this in the new year. McLaren plans to manufacture all their supercars as hybrids by the mid-2020s.