What Do You Have Against California Wine? (Reflection #7)


Wine business has been poor for the past year and on top of that the sommeliers in San Francisco bay area have been avoiding California wines. That is what I read at least twice a month in the online media in one context or another. I remember years before this economic downturn California wines were everywhere and I read in San Francisco Chroncile about a black sheep sommelier at a restaurant named Slanted Door who refused to add California wines to his wine list. “How dare he?” the article asked. I happened to email him and support him on his point about acid of the wine and matching with food. That was a few years ago but today, the debate is everywhere. Everyone is mad about how California wine is being treated. We have so many arguments about why and how of the mis-treatment of the California wine. I really think discussing the state of California wine is redundant but have to point out a few small points that may help get the whole thing viewed perfectly. I hate to say everyone knows these but the debate will not leave the media: 1. California wine is extremely expensive as a food product. Competition does EXIST and have advantages in this area 2. California wine has universal characteristics that separates it from many. Warmer climates mean high alcohol, low acid and the same stuff you have heard all over again. It just doesn’t like food but can do well by glass and as aperitif. 3. Wine drinking in United States is more of a fad than a real ritual. Fashion pieces go in and out. This is what you get for letting the public learn about wine. They will go and drink somebody else’s because they have found out about. I don’t care how many more points can be listed. I am sure I will read more indignant protests on behalf of California wine again soon.

*This post belongs to this week’s edition of Wine by Cush Magazine blog and published early in World of Cush


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