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Sovetskoye Shampanskoye

I think that the Champagne producers believe that their names carry enough weight and cachet that it doesn’t matter if their product is labelled as French Sparkling Wine. Their customers don’t buy Champagne, they buy Bolly, Cristal, Moet etc.

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I’m not sure the Champenois would have gone to such trouble to have protected the name Champagne if that were entirely the case. I’m sure in certain markets it’s brands first and foremost - Russia is probably a classic example - but in much of the rest of the world I’d imagine they feel comfortable under that big, protective umbrella.

Not too sure about this. Of course the wineries are much more recent, but I’m not sure the industry is centuries behind. Judging by competition results and performances the industry is not behind at all. We may be starting later but have access to all current knowledge, technology, methods, etc. I don’t think it’s a helpful or realistic way to look at it.

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I’m not sure what you mean by “agreed” to it, as they didn’t have any say in the law.

That only goes so far though - as (And he’ll probably get fed up of me tagging him soon :smiley:) @Ghost-of-Mr-Tallis points out, we are only just beginning in our understanding of what could and should be planted where, what soils will give what results etc etc etc.

Those depths and layers of knowledge will not happen overnight, and as I say, on the continent they have generations of experience to help guide them. A great wealth of trail-and-error experiments have been tried already by generations past. Whilst technology in the winery can effectively be bought off the peg, wide ranging understanding of exactly where in the English (British?) countryside will make the best wine is still an understanding that is in it’s infancy.

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Traditional Method is internationally understood.

Méthode champenoise is not allowed in the EU, except by the Champenois who have no need for it as Champagne is by definition made by that method

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My first thought was to say that it was like saying Tesla was decades behind Mercedes, but I realised this wasn’t a very precise analogy. It’s true that some areas have centuries of experience and knowledge, but that experience and knowledge is now available and can be shared.
The areas of England producing high quality sparkling wine were not discovered through years of trial and error, but by soil analysis and realisation that the soil type and climate were very similar to the Champagne region. There will be scope for fine tuning, but the centuries of trial and error don’t need to be repeated.


Surely the whole point of all these designations is to protect or preserve traditional methods or ingredients used in a particular area, and to maintain a level of quality. British wine making is not yet sufficiently developed (in a historical sense) to have such ‘traditions’, whether by region, county or whatever.

A classification system could be developed over time, but as we are unlikely ever to be bulk producers, why not let the individual winemakers carve out their own style and reputation? Aren’t there plenty of winemakers around the world who are declassifying their wines in order to make what they think are better products?

I don’t see why artificial constraints should be imposed on wine production techniques simply to conform to a standard that has no historical background and would not necessarily be a guarantee of quality, nor (yet) be very informative for the consumer.


Like some other non-EU countries, we seem to be working within the current EU framework for protected categories, I presume because that makes it easier to negotiate mutual recognition of protected names.

It’s not only France that has ditched VDQS, but that tier no longer exists in the EU. There is PGI and PDO, and that’s all (though some countries are keeping their old names - in Italy DOC snd DOCG both map onto PDO). So we should forget that middle tier

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Fair point, I hadn’t considered that aspect!

(Of course, the devil’s advocate in me says we’re free of all that nonsense now, and can concentrate existing in a vacuum where we don’t have to please or compromise with anybody :smiley:).


We can now select our markets freely, and should take this opportunity to supply Russia with Ingliskoye Plonkfizzkoye. That’s the Brexit spirit!


Made from concentrate, product of more than one country?


Under the new rules, we could import it from China, relabel it and make a sackload of cash. Talk about a win-win for English Wine, no overheads, massive profits!

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I’m sure China not think about ripping-off our Ingliskoye Plonkfizzkoye brand and selling direct to Russia, so yeah why not? We just have to believe in ourselves


They wouldn’t dare! Where’s your Dunkirk spirit?

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They agreed to re-label their wine, as in: omit the word ‘Champagne’. Seems barmy to me because it could set a precedent. But I guess all those rubles add up, especially when the Ch. houses finances will have suffered from a lack of weddings, festive gatherings etc…

A bit like (some) Japanese Whiskies. Except they import from Canada & Scotland before blending & marketing.

Yes, we really showed those Germans who was boss then


My heart bleeds for them

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I don’t think they have omitted the word Champage. It just says that they have added the words “sparkling wine” to the back label.

In any case, if they have to do this by law, then I don’t think they are agreeing to it. I don’t agree to pay 20% VAT in shops; I just have to do it because it’s the law.