Here’s an interesting bit of wine news – it’s not everyday that you hear about a veritable Apocalypse Now of tens of thousands and thousands of bottles of wine, let alone have that wine related to movie icons, providing an opportunity to utilize puns related to kick-ass cinema in a wine context.
This week, Law.com and Courthouse News Service reported the news that Napa Valley producer Coppola (owned of course by famed producer and director Francis Ford Coppola) is suing cork and bottle manufacturer Vinocor USA, alleging that Vinocor is responsible for ruining 55,000 cases of the Coppola wines.
Yes, 55,000 cases (nearly 700K bottles of wine). That’s a lot of vinegar!
Apparently Coppola’s company Francis Ford Coppola Presents paid Vinocor nearly $700K to produce some funky-looking bottles with over-sized screwcap enclosures to help promote their “Encyclopedia” line of wines. But it looks likenot all went to plan, as Coppola is claiming the substandard quality of the Vinocor products resulted in the oxidation of all 55,000 cases bottled of Encyclopedia.
That’s certainly the largest amount of wine I’ve ever heard of being ruined by a screwcap enclosure. The allegation is not against screwcaps in general, of course – it’s that the Vinocor screwcaps were allegedly flawed, having issues with their threading and didn’t create a proper seal to protect the wine.
Will this lawsuit cause a setback in the adoption of screwcaps?
I doubt it – certainly some top-notch wines are well bought into the stelvin enclosures, including New Zealand’s Kim Crawford and California’s Bonny Doon. Properly-made screwcaps seem more than capable of properly aging a wine, at least when it comes to medium-term storage. Whether they will help a wine last 20+ years is more debatable question, but theoretically there’s no reason why they couldn’t.
Got a stance on screwcaps, wine-related lawsuits, or Coppola movie quotes? Shout `em out in the comments!
I recently received a press release from the Wine School of Philadelphia, with whom I’ve been discussing taking part in their Sommelier Smackdown event series (basically, in a Smackdown event the Wine School staff take on local wine personalities and wine pros in a contest to match up wines with dinner recipes, and usually much merriment / fun / smack-talk ensues).
So far, we haven’t been able to nail down a mutually available date, and both the Wine School of Phila. and I had been lax in following up to make it happen. Their recent press release helped to clear things up, though – turns out that the reason things have been delayed (and I am not making this up) is that they’ve been issued a cease and desist order on the Sommelier Smackdown event series – from World Wrestling Entertainment!
Vince McMahon Issues Smackdown Against Wine School
Philadelphia, PA. Vince McMahon is taking on his oddest foe to date: a sommelier wine tasting. The World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc., has issued a cease and desist against The Wine School of Philadelphia and its popular “Sommelier Smackdown” series of wine classes.
In a letter to the school’s owner, the WWE’s lawyers are threatened legal action if the school does not stop hosting the series of wine tastings. “I feel kind of special,” says Keith Wallace, “I am being picked on by Vince McMahon. I better start working out.”
The Sommelier Smackdown is a series of food and wine pairing events that take place in Philadelphia. The event pits a sommelier against a member of The Wine School team, and the audience gets to vote for the winner.
Mr. Wallace says he will not stop running the classes, at least for now. “They don’t have a leg to stand on. I am not going to bow down to a bully,” he says. “They claim that they own the term “smackdown” but they don’t.”
In response to the WWE threat, Wallace is calling out Mr. McMahon and the wrestler Chris Jerico to a wine-tasting double-team cage match.
Keith Wallace is the Founder and Director of The Wine School of Philadelphia. He is a contributing writer for The Daily Beast, and is currently working on his first book for Running Press.
Oh, sure, use the old “I can’t go head-to-head with you today, I’m in legal action with the WWE” excuse. Cowards!
But seriously, I imagine that you are having the same reaction that I did – as in, WTF?!?!?!
Let’s just get one thing clearer than a Loire Muscadet Sevre et Maine right now: I am NOT getting into a throw-down, folding-chair-throwing cage match with anybody over wine pairings…especially Robert Parker, because that guy is big…
And just like that… it was all over.
What was arguably the largest publicity-minded event in the history of U.S. winemaking is over, as the reality-TV-inspired A Really Goode Job contest thrown by Murphy-Goode winery has finally come to an end.
I’m extremely pleased to report that 1WineDude.com friend Hardy Wallace of DirtySouthWine.com has been named the winner, and will begin his 6-month post as Murphy-Goode main media man on August 15th.
Frequent 1WineDude.com readers will recall that Hardy was my pick back in May when the contest first started taking off. Personally, I’m pleased as sangria-punch to see Hardy get the attention, accolades, and the job of his dreams. You can view the entire press release on the winning announcement here.
The entire event garnered a massive amount of publicity (both positive and negative), and saw job opportunities open up to several of the participants as wineries were exposed to the increasing power of social media and Internet-based marketing as a result of the campaign.
What does it mean for the world of wine? It’s good news for Hardy, great news for Murphy-Goode, and even better news for wine and social media as a whole…
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