Q: When is a wine not a wine?

February 27th, 2015

Wine not wineAnswer: When it’s a ‘wine based drink’!

Reading back labels might well be a boring pastime, and you might consider it to be the reserve of the so called ‘wine anoraks’, but actually they might well discover something that you don’t….. The small print could indicate that the ‘wine’ that you think you are enjoying might not be wine at all, but rather a ‘wine based drink’ containing only 75% of real wine.

The make-up of the other 25% is not quite clear, as legally, ‘wine’makers are not obliged to specify, but speculation is that it could be water, grape must, or a combination of water and sugar. Whatever, the unknown constituent, the wines have been described as ” lacking genuine character, dilute, unpleasant, contrived and manufactured”….. they sound delicious!

Having said that, the problem is not so much the flavour (as consumers will inevitably vote with their taste buds), but more the fact that they are being sold alongside real wines, with no obvious distinction between the two. Of course this is not only highly misleading, but could potentially damage the integrity of our industry.

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