Friday, September 07, 2007

Let's parlais winespeak

They say: We're rationalising our range
They really mean: The labels have changed and the price has gone up.

They say: It's a blend of premium grape varieties
They really mean: Our wine is cheap

They say: We ferment at cool temperature to retain maximum fruit intensity
They really mean: This tastes of bubble gum and sherbet

They say: We left a small amount of residual sugar to lift the flavour
They really mean: It doesn't taste of anything, but it's sweet

They say: We picked early to retain some acidity.
They really mean: It's sharp and tasteless, but the yields were huge.

They say: It's an early drinking light wine
They really mean: It's got no flavour and won't last the year out

They say: The grapes are picked at maximum ripeness
They really mean: The grapes are picked too late

They say: The acidity and tannin will soften with age
They really mean: The acidity and tannin will not soften with age

They say: We are looking to expand into sparkling wine
They really mean: We are looking to make some money from sparkling wine

They say: We are looking to expand
They really mean: We are looking to improve our cashflow

They say: The UK market is very important to us
They really mean: The UK press is very important to us

They say: We've had some interesting results
They really mean: We've had some disgusting results, but Domestos are interested.

They say: The label is a freeform depiction of the sunset over the nearby lake
They really mean: The artist likes The Grateful Dead

They say: Our winemaker trained at Geisenheim
They really mean: We don't make reds

They say: My family have been making wine in California for many generations
They really mean: My grandfather was a bootlegger

They say: Our aim is to educate the wine drinker
They really mean: Our aim is to fleece the wine drinker

They say: We have stopped using lead capsules in order to promote 'green' values
They really mean: Plastic capsules are cheaper

They say: We practice a policy of minimum intervention
They really mean: Our wine is expensive

They say: We are experimenting with Italian and Rhone varieties
They really mean: Our wine is expensive

They say: The winemaker regularly travels to compare notes with producers in other areas
They really mean: Our wine is expensive

They say: This wine is best with marinated swordfish
They really mean: We opened several bottles, and ate several meals, and it went least badly with swordfish.

They say: The perfect partner for raw scallops marinated in dill and paprika
They really mean: Lousy with food

They say: It's an ideal restaurant wine
They really mean: It doesn't taste of anything, but the label's nice.

They say: This usually proves popular with the ladies
They really mean: It's sweet/pink

They say: Our wines are designed to sit on the same table as the top French ones
They really mean: We make ludicrously expensive Cabernet and Chardonnay

They say: We were the first to plant up in these hills back in the late 60s
They really mean: We also grow dope

They say: I’m not sure if I understand what you mean
They really mean: Our wine is expensive, flavourless and too tannic

They say: These are the results of our exciting new winemaking project
They really mean: These are clean but boring wines made to a price point by a foreigner

They say: The ideal partner for fish, chicken and pasta
They really mean: OK, so it doesn’t taste of anything

4 comments:

Colin said...

Simon, what an excellent post. It has really made me smile this dreary Monday morning. Your creativity deserves a wider audience to get the appreciation it deserves.

PS were you the Simon Wood who judged at the IWC? I was one of the staff.

Glen said...

Funny stuff! And oh so true. How about this one:

They say: Expert blend of 60/40
They really mean: We threw together all our leftovers

and to expand on your own a little:

They say: We left a small amount of residual sugar to lift the flavour
They really mean: We added sugar

They say: We picked early to retain some acidity.
They really mean: We added acid
etc etc!!!
keep up the good work

SIMON WOODS said...

Colin, yes I am the IWC Simon Woods - will you be there for next year's tasting?

Glen, thanks for the comments. I'm sure there are several more we can think of given the correct vinous stimulation...

Colin said...

Absolutely - I'll be there.

Despite it being hard work, it's a great learning opportunity for my WSET Diploma, a chance to meet interesting people and where else would I get the chance to taste so many wines in one place?