Friday, May 22, 2009

Zip Code Winery?

Yep, seems it's a new term for a winery whose vineyards may be located in one place, but seeks to associate itself with another area.

In a profile of wine mogul, Fred Franzia, the May 18, 2009 issue of The New Yorker describes how Franzia's popular "cheapie" Charles Shaw wine, also known as Two Buck Chuck at Trader Joe's, gains from the prestige associated with the Napa Valley wine region -- where it is bottled -- even though it is made from grapes grown in vineyards in California's less desirable Central Valley.

Although Charles Shaw wine falls under the generic California branding, it can legitimately be labeled "Cellared & Bottled by Charles Shaw Winery, Napa, CA," a practice that strikes many in Napa as a bit unsavory. "It’s called a Zip Code winery," Vic Motto, a business adviser to Napa Valley wineries, says. "The unsuspecting consumer may not realize it’s not Napa wine."

This sort of reminds me of the rumored waters from the French Alps -- which actually start out from a kitchen tap somewhere in The Bronx. On the other hand, the "bottling" is probably happening in The Bronx too...but you get the idea.

Anyway, if you'd like to know a little more about zip code wine processing, read more here

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