12 Most Absurd Wine Names
I am relatively new to the wine world. I don’t know a shiraz from a chardonnay but I have discovered one or two wines that I can drink fairly easily.
I’m still in experimental mode, trying pretty much anything that’s put in front of me, but I don’t know about these wines. I get that marketing needs to catch your attention, but really… are these names supposed to encourage people to buy?
One of the first wines to come out with a non-traditional name, back in 2004 Bitch, by R Wines, was an instant hit. Young women on their way to bachelorette parties were scooping up the very reasonably priced Grenache. In case you don’t feel like counting the back label, it repeats the title 77 times
2. Cat’s Pee on a Gooseberry Bush
This was my sister’s favourite wine, and my first taste of non-traditional wine names. Would you believe that the name is based on “fact”? Apparantly Sauvignon is often said to taste like “cat’s pee.” So why not call it what it is? Mmmmmm… yummy! I think I’ll run right out and get a bottle now.
3. Love My Goat
A unique, mellow and easy drinking red wine with a strange name from Bully Hill Wineries.
4. Fat Bastard
The result of an experiment — leaving the wine in barrel on the lees (whatever the heck that means) — “Fat Bastard” was the reactionary expression used to describe the wine. The name stuck. It was one of the fastest growing wine names in the U.S.
5. Four Skins
Being from Nova Scotia, this wine from Jost Vineyards has a special place in my newbie wine-loving heart. The red wine is a blend of four carefully selected grapes, of course. What did you think it meant?
6. Frog’s Piss
I can’t help but wonder if the story behind this one is similar to Cat’s Pee on a Gooseberry Bush? I can’t seem to find out, but it is widely referred to as a “drinkable plonk”. So I guess it’s worth a try.
7. Big Ass Cab
Even my minute wine knowledge can see this is a play on “Cabernet Sauvignon.” In fact, I think I might like this one aged in oak barrels and mixed to produce strong tannins. Of all the names here, I think this one actually makes the most sense, symbolically… Big Ass equals full bodied in wine speak. Hey, I’m learning a lot just writing this article.
8. Fifth Leg
Interestingly, this name has nothing to do with wine. It simply refers to a cave in Australia where someone supposedly found a Tiger skeleton with an extra leg. Huh.
9. Toasted Head
The name comes from the traditional practice of toasting barrel heads and staves to impart a mellow, toasted flavor to barrel-aged wines. This winery began producing in California in 1995.
10. The Ball Buster
At 15.8% alcoholic content it’s no wonder where the name came from. From another Australian winery, and similar to Four Skins, this red is a mix of Shiraz, Cabernet Saugvignon and Merlot.
11. Lizard Spit
From the Clinch Mountain Winery, comes a grape wine with natural flavouring added. The label explains the name as it features the Clinch Mountain Lizard snake — the most deadly snake in North America. Remember the 80’s? This wine is “deadly.”
This is, apparently, what you call a wine when you’ve accidentally mislabelled the grapes it’s made from for years. Oh yeah… that’s an “oops.”
The only one of these wines that I’ve actually tasted myself is Cat’s Pee on a Gooseberry Bush… and I can’t say that I actually remember what it was like. My current favorites are Relax Riesling and a Moscato D’Asti Dolce… pretty tame sounding wines compared to this list. Maybe, just maybe, I’ll have to start branching out. They would make a pretty interesting bottle collection to display, to say the least.
What absurd wine names have you come across lately? Please let me know in the comments below, and let’s have a laugh.
Featured image courtesy of uberculture licensed via Creative Commons.