The Wine Czar Has Arrived
Inspired by Paul Gregutt’s excellent story on the meaning of wine terms, I began fantasizing about being named the American Wine Czar and being given complete control over wine regulations in the United States. I’ve fantasized about this before but given the wonderful fantasy it is, the topic deserves an update.
My first set of acts as the American Wine Czar are:
THE OLD VINE" REGULATION
Any wine produced in the United States that carries the term "Old Vine" or "Ancient Vine" or any other derivation of these terms that imply the vines are actually much older than average must have have been made with 100% grapes grown on vines that have been in the ground for 75 years or more.
THE VARIETAL REGULATION
Any wine sold in America that carries a varietal designation on the label must be made with 100% of the named variety.
THE DIVERSITY REGULATION
Any company that sells wine to consumers that is not also a producer must carry at least two wines from no less than five different states.
THE CONSUMER WINE PROPERTY REGULATION
Any consumer that takes legal possession of a wine may ship that wine to anyone anywhere in the United States unfettered by any agency or law of any state.
THE SPINAL PROTECTION ACT
No wine sold in the United States may be contained in a bottle that weighs more than 25oz.
The "HANDCRAFTED" REGULATION
No wine sold in America may carry a back label that asserts the wine was "hand crafted" unless documentation is submitted to the Wine Czar that verifies the wine was actually produced entirely while being held in the hands of one or more employees of the producer.
THE "RESERVE" DISCLOSURE REGULATION
The term "reserve" may be used on any wine label of American-produced wines only if on the back label the producer explains why the wine in the bottle is of higher quality than all other non-"reserve" wines made by the same producers.
THE "100 POINT" ACT
A 100 Point rating scale may only be used to rate a wine or promote a wine or to advertise a wine if the person or company assigning the rating is able to explain the difference between an 88 point wine and an 89 point in purely aesthetic terms.