June 19, 2005
French waiters snobby? Mais non! C'est impossible!
I know you'll find this amazing, but I was shocked, shocked to discover that French wine stewards in British restaurants are biased in favour of French wine:
It would seem, according to snobbish French sommeliers, that the closest most Australians get to fine wine are the corks that dangle around their hats.
While New World wine has stormed the high street in recent years, concern is growing that when it comes to selecting the best bottles, snooty French experts are deliberately excluding many fine Antipodean vintages from restaurants.
The conspiracy theory is backed up by research which shows that while sales of French wine in off licenses represent only 17% of the market, restaurants still choose to have more than 40% of their stock from just across the Channel.
Imagine that: just because they're born in France, trained in French schools and wineries, and are effectively ambassadors for their native wines, they still brazenly show bias toward French wine! Who'd have ever thought of such a thing?
Posted by Nicholas at June 19, 2005 04:06 PM
I have really gotten into Australian wines over the last month or so. They have got some great selections. The Cabernet's are fantastic
Amazed indeed... I this might be more widespread than you indicate as an Australian Sommilier who advised me the other week showed a distinct preferrance to his native wines. A terrible state of affairs.
Australian Cabernet, in common with Californian Cabernet blends, tend to the fruitier, easy-to-drink style, while French Bordeaux is a much more tannic (what the wine writers will call "structured"), and needs longer before showing all the flavours hidden in the wine.
French wine _can_ be great, but most French wine is pretty ordinary. That's true of Australian, Californian, Canadian, Italian, and Spanish wines too: most of it is plonk. There are some French wines which are exceptional (now that I've tasted a few of the better wines I'm more open-minded about it), but there are also some exceptional wines from the New World as well.
> A terrible state of affairs.
Exactly my sentiments. I think we should require them to deliberately abjure any mention of the wines of their native country, just to avoid any hint of bias. In fact, let's pass a law that requires them to criticize the wines of their native countries at all times.
Oh, except for Canadian wine, of course! Gotta sneak in the Canadian Content rule somewhere. . .