Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

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Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Robin Garr » Mon Aug 07, 2006 10:21 am

<B>Poll: Worst wine trend?</B>
One of our first WineLovers' Voting Booth topics, back in September 1999, invited readers to nominate the then-current wine trends that they considered worst. Today we return to this topic, curious to learn whether similar responses will prevail or if new worrisome trends have taken the fore after seven years. The more responses, the better, so please take just a moment to click to the survey form on our Netscape WineLovers Community and share your opinion:

Worst wine trend?
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby James Roscoe » Mon Aug 07, 2006 12:04 pm

Natural corks! (The devil made me do it.) :twisted:
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Paul B. » Tue Aug 08, 2006 12:05 pm

As I mentioned on the other forum, I think that the worst trend is surely the continuing influence of anti-shipping laws, at least within North America (can't speak for other jurisdictions). Internationalized wines are not wines that I have to purchase if they don't meet my taste preferences; anti-shipping laws, however, make it difficult or impossible for me to get wines sent to me that do interest me. I think that the time is right for the revocation of all these prohibition-hangover "nanny rules" so that there is complete free trade in wine for consumers.
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Jenise » Tue Aug 08, 2006 2:09 pm

Am I alone in finding this poll a little strange? It seems to me that it lumps together what I would otherwise consider mutually exclusive priorities: what's in the bottle vs. consumer issues like shipping. It's like having to pick between apples and cucumbers, which otherwise don't compete.
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Robin Garr » Tue Aug 08, 2006 2:48 pm

Jenise wrote:Am I alone in finding this poll a little strange? It seems to me that it lumps together what I would otherwise consider mutually exclusive priorities: what's in the bottle vs. consumer issues like shipping. It's like having to pick between apples and cucumbers, which otherwise don't compete.


Well ... these small polls generally over-simplify things, but I don't really see that it's any more complicated than would be a list of many fruits and vegetables that asks you to pick the one you like (or dislike) the most. That would be a legitimate way to pick between apples and cucumbers, it seems to me. (I like cucumbers a lot more than I like apples. :)

Note also that this is a follow-up on a September 1999 poll in which these five categories significantly topped a list that had about five other choices that few people clicked. And it's doing pretty well in the answers department, which suggests that people aren't having a hard time figuring it out ...
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Jenise » Tue Aug 08, 2006 6:13 pm

And it's doing pretty well in the answers department


That's good. I guess I just took an extra dose of sourpuss this morning. :)
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Robin Garr » Tue Aug 08, 2006 6:29 pm

Jenise wrote:I guess I just took an extra dose of sourpuss this morning. :)


I do that sometimes, but I try not to take it more than three times a week. :oops:
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Jenise » Tue Aug 08, 2006 6:33 pm

but I try not to take it more than three times a week.


Well, I'm a girl and married too, so no more than once a week. Hmmm...do I have the right topic? :shock:
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Eric Ifune » Tue Aug 08, 2006 7:37 pm

When I look at the recent prices of Classed growth Bordeaux and Grand Cru Burgundy, I'd have to go with pricing.
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Tom V » Wed Aug 09, 2006 3:02 am

I was surprised to see that shipping restrictions was garnering the most votes in this poll. Not, I hope, to be too nit-picky but a trend is something that is increasing in influence, building steam so to speak. The wine shipping restriction problem quite to the contrary is easing, and while this won't make the folks any happier who are still inconvenienced by it, the trend is towards improvement. I think it would be better classified as "worst wine reality for those subjected to it".
The other choices are in fact trends and they affect all wine lovers regardless of where they reside. Myself, I voted for Internationalizing of Wines because the more steam this trend builds the more it destroys native grape varieties and the unique and intriguing qualities of local wines. Tom V
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Robin Garr » Wed Aug 09, 2006 7:38 am

Tom V wrote:I was surprised to see that shipping restrictions was garnering the most votes in this poll. Not, I hope, to be too nit-picky but a trend is something that is increasing in influence, building steam so to speak. The wine shipping restriction problem quite to the contrary is easing, and while this won't make the folks any happier who are still inconvenienced by it, the trend is towards improvement. I think it would be better classified as "worst wine reality for those subjected to it".


Tom, whether this is a trend may depend on your location. Bear in mind, though, that while New York gained and Michigan gained slightly from the Supreme Court decision, all the Court really did was throw the issue back to the states, and on that battleground, the battle is far from over. The wine and liquor lobby is throwing huge money at it, and in state after state <i>outside</i> the two states mentioned, they've managed to persuade legislatures in quite a few states to make matters worse. Much worse, because their preferred "Nobody Ships" laws have the potential to kill off local small-farm wine industries AND limit the market for smaller family wineries in California and elsewhere, all in the interest of maximizing their profits by pumping lots of Kendall-Jackson and Gallo through their monopolistic pipeline.

Kentucky, Indiana, Maryland, Kansas, Virginia ... that's only a few of the states where freedom of choce has been further <i>curtailed</i> during the past 12 months. I call that a trend, and I call it ugly. :evil:
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Bob Ross » Wed Aug 09, 2006 8:39 am

Don't forget New Jersey which was one leader on the way backwards ...
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Robin Garr » Wed Aug 09, 2006 8:47 am

Bob Ross wrote:Don't forget New Jersey which was one leader on the way backwards ...


Absolutely, Bob. As I recall, they *anticipated* the decision by banning all shipping *before* it came down. And I don't think anybody doubts that the occult hand of the wholesalers weighed heavily on the administrative decision.
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Bob Ross » Wed Aug 09, 2006 10:24 am

The worst of it is that I can generally get wine from anywhere now that the local UPS office is wine friendly.

Anywhere, that is, except from New Jersey wineries. They refuse to ship within the state. Even worse, there is so little call for New Jersey wines, the distributors and the retailers won't stock it or ship it special order as a general rule.

You are quite right -- the legislators anticipated the ruling. I almost wrote that New Jersey was the first in line for this trend -- but if we weren't first, we were certainly in the vanguard.

PITA.
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Paul B. » Wed Aug 09, 2006 10:49 am

Not being versed in the specific laws that govern liquor distribution in the U.S., I wonder what the exact law or constitutional amendment is that actually continues to give states jurisdiction over wine shipping. Is there not some way for that particular provision to be repealed federally, giving the feds some way of unilaterally removing the state-by-state legal patchwork, thereby effectively introducing free interstate wine trade? There are probably large tax revenue issues at stake, and that might be the main reason that the federal government doesn't just wipe away this prohibitionist hangover in one dramatic fell swoop. Even if they did wipe it away to the glee of wine consumers - couldn't they ensure that interstate wine transactions resulted in both free choice for the consumer, and the states in question getting their taxes? Doesn't that sound like a fair solution for all?
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Bob Ross » Wed Aug 09, 2006 12:25 pm

It's the 21st amendment to the US Constitution, Paul, which provides:

Section 1. The eighteenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed.

Section 2. The transportation or importation into any State, Territory, or possession of the United States for delivery or use therein of intoxicating liquors, in violation of the laws thereof, is hereby prohibited.


In our system, there would have to be another amendment to change the rule.

The Supreme Court has interpreted the Amendment on a number of occasions; one good summary appears at http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/data/cons ... endment21/

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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Paul B. » Wed Aug 09, 2006 12:27 pm

Many thanks for this, Bob. Very interesting.

In fact, it was indeed such an amendment - a new amendment - that I had in mind. I wonder if it could ever come to pass, and what dynamics would have to be in order for it to be successful.
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Robin Garr » Wed Aug 09, 2006 12:52 pm

Paul B. wrote:Many thanks for this, Bob. Very interesting.

In fact, it was indeed such an amendment - a new amendment - that I had in mind. I wonder if it could ever come to pass, and what dynamics would have to be in order for it to be successful.


Paul, these policy issues have been discussed here so often, with you participating, that I'm surprised it's not clear to you yet. :)

The answer, of course, is money: The wholesale lobby has a vested interest in keeping things the way they are. They are experienced lobbyists, and they have very deep pockets. There is no real organized opposition because the number of wine geeks who care is minuscule, not well organized, and has no funds or significant lobbying organization. It's hardball politics, and wine geeks can't really field a team.

You could make a serious contribution here, if you would choose to do so, by sleuthing out why Canada, where you live, seems to have similar strictures <i>even though you don't have a similar constitutional issue with the language of Repeal</i>. How did the LCBO acquire its monopoly, and why does LCBO (or other Provincial liquor authorities) even care whether citizens can buy wines across the borders among provinces? (I'm not at this point talking about international sales, which raise an entirely different set of customs and inspection issues.)
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Bob Ross » Wed Aug 09, 2006 2:02 pm

Paul, I agree with Robin that there is no chance of a Constitutional Amendment being even introduced let alone passed by the requisite number of states. It's not only money, but prohibitionists and states' righters, among others, who would oppose such an amendment.

From time to time folks hope that the Supreme Court will find that the 21st Amendment is itself unconstitutional under the Commerce Clause: [The Federal Government has the power] "To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;" Those four words -- "among the several States" -- have been some of the most intensely analyzed and fought over throughout the history of this country.

I do believe the Supreme Court will modify our understanding of the 21st Amendment in the future, but not that it will be held unconstitutional.

I join Robin in asking why Canada has similar restrictions on shipping; I've really enjoyed researching that question in Sweden, Norway and Finland. But I really don't know what our nearest northern neighbor is doing, nor why.

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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby Paul B. » Wed Aug 09, 2006 2:29 pm

Robin and Bob, the reason why Canada has interprovincial wine shipping barriers and why the LCBO exists despite the lack of constitution-related reasons is something that this legal non-beagle just doesn't know. I would be delighted to pose the question on some of the Canadian e-mail wine and grape-growing discussion lists I subscribe to (one in particular has frequent LCBO-related discussions) and post back any good answers that I get. I'm curious as to the reasons as well.
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Re: Netscape Forum Poll: Worst wine trend?

Postby wrcstl » Wed Aug 09, 2006 5:43 pm

Sorta a strange grouping but maybe things have changed that much since 1999. I would think that international styles and making wine for a reviewer would be the same. Oak is not a trend, at least not an increasing trend. There is still too much oak used but it seems to be slightly on the decline. Regardless, I voted "international style".
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