This Week In Wine – 5/7/11

This week in wine...



Fish bladderWarning: This wine may contain fish bladders

Wine lovers could be in for a bizarre shopping experience when a controversial federal law comes into effect in summer 2012. Get ready for label warnings declaring that your favorite beverage contains fish, eggs or milk.

As part of new Health Canada food and beverage regulations designed to protect allergy sufferers and people with severe food intolerances, alcohol producers will be required to list an array of odd-sounding “ingredients,” things you’d expect to find on a plate next to your Merlot rather than in it.
Animal-derived products have long been used in wine making as gentle clarifying agents after fermentation. Suspended particles become attracted to the substances, clump together and fall to the bottom of a tank or barrel. The clear wine is then separated from the sediment.

My thoughts:

I’m all about transparency, but sometimes a little knowledge is a bad thing. I already hear enough people complaining about “allergies” to sulfites, probably since U.S. wines are required by law to label with that statement. Curiously, these same people state that they drink wines in Europe without any problem, I’m guessing because the E.U. doesn’t require sulfites to be labeled!
I can already hear people asking for “… wine that doesn’t contain any fish bladders…”

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RiojaArgentina wins wine battle over ‘La Rioja’

Records show that grapes in the northern Spanish region of La Rioja, renowned for its red wines, date back to at least the 9th century and that local wines were recognized by the King of Navarre and Aragon in 1102.
It was a Spaniard, Juan Ramirez de Velazco, who in 1591 founded the city of Todos los Santos de la Nueva Rioja in Argentina and named it in homage of the region of Spain where he was born. The Spanish were also responsible for introducing vineyards to the Argentine land surrounding the northwestern province’s capital city. But in recent decades Spanish producers of Rioja began to question whether their counterparts in Argentina should be allowed to continue using the name at all.

My thoughts:

This is so cute. Spain fighting with Argentinian over a name. All I can guess is that Spain is a little jealous over Argentinean wines having seen such success over the past few years; leaving Spanish winemakers with a pouty look on their face.
I think they are missing the bigger picture, namely; all of Europe needs to step up it’s wine marketing game!
The majority of them are using the same wine labels that they have been using for 10-20-30+ years, scared that if they update they will lose their heritage. There will be no heritage if no-one is buying the wine!
They are also pouring huge amounts of money (through E.U. funding) into the old school marketing methods (i.e. major wine magazines), and they wonder why the Millennial’s aren’t buying!  Step. It. Up!

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Mommys Time Out

Wine producers marketing to harried moms

Why did Marile Borden name her website Moms Who Need Wine?
If you have to ask, Borden says, "You must not be a mom."
"Moms are becoming much more real in terms of admitting that the job is a difficult one and that a nice glass of wine at the end of the day sure helps," says Borden, mother of two and founder and publisher of the Moms Who Need Wine website, which has about 390,000 fans on Facebook.
So how hot are mom wines? Hot enough to have their own trademark battle going on between MommyJuice and another mom-marketed wine, Mommy’s Time Out.
Recently, Clos LaChance asked a San Francisco federal court to declare that its wine does not violate the trademark of Mommy’s Time Out.

My thoughts:

I have no thoughts on this. I don’t care. Let them get on with it.

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I like my vineyards right next to a motorway!Outrage over motorway for German wine country

Opponents of a giant bridge to be built through Germany’s historic wine country, prized for its world-class Rieslings, mourned on Tuesday their defeat in a years-long battle to stop the project.

Pro-Mosel, a group of vintners, businesspeople and residents of southwestern Germany’s scenic Mosel Valley, said they were shocked by the outcome of state coalition talks late Monday that gave the green light to the bridge.

Opponents, including powerful international wine critics, say the project is an eyesore that could destroy the delicate alchemy of the vineyards’ steep slate slopes, drip irrigation and sun exposure that create stellar white wines.

My thoughts:

Quite sad that this is what it has come to. Progress is progress though I guess, although I have a hard time believing that the road couldn’t have been diverted in order not to interfere with one of Germanys largest export products.

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The Queen - she likes to get drunk like all the rest of us.Royal family to produce its own wine from Windsor Great Park grapes

The Royal Family is going one step further with plans to make an English wine of its very own.
This Sunday, or early next week, depending on the weather, 16,700 vines will be planted in a section of Windsor Great Park, the former hunting park to which Queen Victoria and Prince Albert were so devoted.
The fledgling vineyard will be planted with champagne varieties – chardonnay, pinot noir and pinot meunier, too – with a view to making an English sparkling wine from grapes grown on this corner of Crown Estate.

My thoughts

I’m really intrigued to try some English sparklers. I’ll make a point of picking up a bottle or 3 on my next trip back. Supposedly the climate has been likened to the Champagne region of France, so it’s already got that going for it! I’ll let you know the results.

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