My friends Shirly and Jon showed up for dinner the other night and brought along a bottle of South African Red with one of those cunning names. It seems that New World – okay I guess South Africa doesn’t count as New World so lets say Non-European – wineries are vying with each other for eye-catching marketing names. The above mentioned Cat’s Pee being one of the more startling one. But it looks like Charles Back’s Fairview Wine Estate, has gone beyond the purely puerile to take on the big boys in France.
A quick read of their website reveals some standard advertising puffery – embraces typicity of terroir, unrestricted by ‘estate’ appellation – not for Fairview the brash vulgarity of the Antipodes. But a visit to their Goats Do Roam site reveals a sly sense of humour when it comes to marketing.
A few of folk at the Institut National des Appellations d’Origine don’t see the humour. They feel that those of us not fortunate enough to have been born in France may be confused by the label. Bien sûr! I’ve always thought of the Côtes du Rhône region as being populated by African children who live in straw huts surrounded by goats!