Things NOT to say to a wine professional

Over at the Facebook, my status yesterday (“please do not say BABY BRUNELLO!”) elicited a lot of comments. Here’s what folks had to say. (Check out the thread on the analogous post as well.)

Lyle Fass Nor bojo, nor moose, nor ducster, nor good juice.

Jeremy Parzen my biggest pet peev? SANGIO UGH!

Tracie Branch Parzen lyle–i hate it when people refer to wine as ‘juice.’ i hear it WAY too much in the wine business!

Sean Beck Even if I say it in a cute voice”?

Josh Cross What about big boy ripasso? Is it a valpolicella thing?

Rebecca Rapaszky We dress our bottles of rosso in diapers and bonnets, then lovingly tickle their labels.

Adrian Reynolds It’s a Cali thing to abbreviate grape varietals, and I agree it’s a little tacky…Cab/Zin/Chard etc. Juice slingers are my pet peeve.

Rebecca Rapaszky We hear things like “Chevy,” “Richburger” and “Monty” all of the time… :(

Adrian Reynolds I need a thesaurasauros for those last 3…

Kevin Lynch This isn’t meant to sound name-dropy, but… I was interviewing/wine tasting with Franco Biondi-Santi. Another reporter asked: How are your Baby Brunellos selling?

Rebecca Rapaszky Adrian, we hear a lot of name-dropping would-be connoisseurs refer to the great wines of Chevalier-Montrachet, Richebourg and Montrachet that way.

Adrian Reynolds Gotcha :-)…

Joey Campanale agreed, or baby supertuscan for that matter

George Pavlov hate that!

Samantha Dugan can we add Champers to the list…pisses me off that

Michael Housewright ahahahahah! I love it Jar!

DLynn Proctor Tig & Orny & Sass

Rebecca Rapaszky ‎”Billy Fever”

Rebecca Rapaszky ‎(William Fevre)

DLynn Proctor ‎!! Never heard Billy Fever…WOW!!!!!!!!!!

Adrian Reynolds Jim Baloney = Giacomo Bologna

Thor Iverson Well, while we’re at it: please don’t use “varietal” when you mean “variety.”

Alfonso Cevola Put “Barolo of the South” on your list while you’re at it.

18 thoughts on “Things NOT to say to a wine professional

  1. I see that I am in excellent company with Thor Iverson on the variety / varietal pet peeve.

    And now I find myself wondering why the hell I don’t read your blog more often! (I plead “toddler.”)


  2. “It’s a Cali thing to abbreviate grape varietals, and I agree it’s a little tacky…”

    i find this particularly amusing as i’ve always thought “Cali” a tacky abbreviation. :)

    • The whole abbreviation/concantenation thing is absolutely a mess. It’s “trade speak” and it is meant to exclude ordinary users and consumers from the “inner sanctum” of whatever trade or social entity is at hand or to endear the user. It doesn’t. Technocrats are bad about this too. I can’t stand “delish”. I am frimly in the non “Champers” camp and “Cali”? Good grief. English is hard enough. We don’t have to make up more things to make it harder. A little tacky? At the very least.

  3. This is too much fun.
    Jeremy, if this doesn’t inspire you to write a wine slang dictionary, then I don’t know… could be best-sella. When you get even more famous than Gary Vee, remember who told you to do it :)!

  4. “How many points did this wine get?”
    “You guys should really stock ______. It would sell.”
    “Oh! Malbec is being made in France now?”

  5. The pervasiveness of the constant misuse of “variety” and “varietal” is almost as shocking as the almost universal obliviousness to the error.

    Yesterday my stomach began to curdle during a meeting when a colleague repeatedly used the word “somms” as an abbreviation of “sommeliers”. I thought she was saying “psalms”.

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