INTERNATIONAL NEWS - French actor and legendary gourmand Gerard Depardieu is putting the entire contents of one of his Paris restaurants under the hammer on Thursday.
Depardieu sold La Fontaine Gaillon in central Paris last month and is now putting everything inside - including its cellar containing vintage Chateau Latour, Cote-Rotie and Meursault wines at up to 6,000 euros ($6,700) a bottle - up for auction.
The flamboyant star opened the restaurant serving hearty French classics in 2003 with his then partner actress Carole Bouquet and wine magnate Bernard Magrez.
The outspoken Depardieu, who railed against the previous Socialist government's plans to raise taxes on the rich, has been selling off a number of his assets in the French capital, including a mansion, a fishmongers and a deli.
"The adventure has come to an end," a friend of the actor told AFP.
Depardieu, 70, who owns a clutch of vineyards in his homeland, announced plans to open three restaurants in Russia in 2014, a year after sparking an outcry by taking Russian nationality.
Rarely out of the headlines, the actor has made more than 180 films, and became the face of French cinema through films such as "Cyrano de Bergerac", for which he was nominated for an Oscar.
La Fontaine Gaillon is set in a picturesque square close to the French capital's theatre district, and had become a gastronomic fixture, warmly reviewed by food critics.
"The sale of the contents of grand hotels and restaurants always attracts a lot of interest," said David Nordmann and Xavier Dominique of auctioneers Ader, even without the added spice of the association with the popular if controversial star.