Blue wine … my two cents

So I get a lot of people asking me, what do I think of blue wine?  The TL;DR version:  It’s not wine.  It should be banished to the “cocktails” section.

The marketing-speak description for blue wine is that it’s dyed with anthocyanin (natural color compound found in grape skins) and indigotine, purportedly extracted from plants.  Indigotine is the same stuff used to color blue candy.  Not too surprising: when I took one sip of a blue wine, it immediately colored my tongue blue, very much like blue candy does.  Anthocyanin is indeed a color compound found in grape skins, and simply put, it is the reason why red wine is red.  However, this compound actually exists in 3 colors – red, transparent, and blue – depending on the pH of the liquid it is in.  The blue state only exists as the pH of the solution increases, and you guessed it, the pH of wine – any wine – is too low for anthocyanin to be in its blue state.

I’m not the type of person to tell you that you shouldn’t drink something you like.  In fact, quite the opposite.  Drink whatever you want, however you want to drink it.  No one can tell you your opinion is flawed.  I apply this even to people drinking my wines.  One guy once told me he enjoys drinking our Château, but with an ice cube.  Why not!  I’m not the one drinking it, and too often people forget the primary reason for wine’s existence:  to have a good time with friends and family.  Yes I very much enjoy professional tastings where we sit, sniff, sip, and sample to study the intricacies that characterize a certain wine – and I’ll even occasionally try to sound grandiloquent – but it never ceases to amaze me how many people are “afraid” of wine tastings, or afraid of sounding silly when offering their opinion on a wine.  Don’t be, your palate is your own, and everyone has a different palate.  I like my steaks rare, you might like them well-done.

Anyway, back to the blue wine, drink it if you like, but in my humble opinion, please don’t call it wine.  The word wine elicits a thought, an emotion, a product shaped by millennia of human and grapevine interaction, it would be a shame to tarnish this heritage with a synthetic caricature.

Cheers!

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