How to make rubbish wine taste good, is this something new?
May 10, 2016
I dont watch too much TV, too many realities and bad programs, but sometime I do. A few nights ago, while having dinner, Food Unwrapped on Channel 4 was on. I still don't get the program, they "unveil" the secrets behind what we eat still I get the feeling that their investigations are just "open days" to which anyone could participate.
On the latest episodes, amongst the other investigations, Kate Quilton, went to see a vineyard in Romania "making rubbish wine taste good" as she said, like she did not know that rubbish wine can actually be made taste good by simply adding chemical "ingredients", like any other recipes, in some country is legal in others is illegal, but no winery until now was proud of them, and therefore, not shown on TV. The winery in question was in Romania, one of the biggest I have ever come across, and is producing wine also for the UK market at about £5 per bottle by adding, depending on the vintage, the necessary chemical substance to keep consistency across vintages. The only way to avoid it, the oenologist said when asked, was to have good grapes, good grapes makes good wine but when you need to keep the prices down, you can't afford to look after the grapes.
The program was on late at night, I dont know how many people were watching it, but what really surprised me was the Romanian winery going publicly on TV about their practices, this is what I meant when I said "open days", and the investigation not investigating the whole cheap wine market, simply visiting a Romanian winery wanting to tell the world that cheap wine is actually made in a laboratory instead than in the vineyards, thinking of this opportunity as a PR exercise, makes the problem appearing like limited to Romanian wine but unfortunately it isn't.
I have been working in the wine industry for many years and come across many "scandals", some made public and some stayed within us, but until now, no winery had the courage to show on TV what really happen behind the scene and this is not something new, it is something that has been done for centuries, possibly even before what we know as wine was even made, together with the first fermentations, to make drinkable the undrinkable results, but if at that time these methods were justified, now, they are not anymore, and they are simply the winery responses to request for very cheap wines, the less we want to spend on wine, the more likely it is that we are drinking a wine that has been made drinkable in a chemistry laboratory.
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