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Freedom Is Here—Again?

By Charles Olken

There is no question that there the number of wines from which to choose is greater than ever before and still expanding. We all love the best wine we can find for our perceived price range. It has always been thus, and it was not that there was no choice a couple of decades ago even though there are more choices today.

But let’s take a step back. I just read another ill-informed article that suggests Napa and Bordeaux are no longer the princes of the back, the kings of road, the be-all and end-all for every wine drinker.

That is the problem with the ill-informed. They just do not have the history to know better so they spout utter BS that today we are freed of our vinous shackles. What the hell do these ignorami think? That we were all drinking top of the line Napa Cabs and rated growths every night—and that the whole body of wine drinkers had never heard of Italy or Spain or South Africa or Muscadet or Gallo Hearty Burgundy?

The wine markets have always offered a range of prices. It still does. The author of an article entitled “Tradition is Dead, Freedom Of Wine Choice Is Here” quotes the wine buyer for Whole Foods, who is another person with no sense of history apparently, as saying ““Our peak on the bell curve is that $15 to $25 price range”. No surprise there—except that it is not a new phenomenon that people are now drinking less than expensive wine. How about when CGCW started? Well, the bell curve for all wine drinkers centered around $2. Napa and Bordeaux were not making wine at that price then, and they are not making wine at the peak of the general public’s bell curve now.

The suggestion the “Tradition Is Dead” is wrong-headed because tradition is defined as Napa Cab and Bordeaux. Very few people were drinking the top growths, the best Burgundies, the Rutherford taste leaders. They still are not, but that does not make tradition dead. Tradition, as defined in the offending article, misses the boat. The best is still the best. It was never very affordable. It still is not. And for most of us, it is wine to dream about while we consume far more affordable stuff. It was ever thus.


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"What the hell do these ignorami think?"
by Bob Henry
Posted on:10/26/2016 1:12:06 AM

Get ready to be pilloried by the ardent defenders of Latin!


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