The EU has announced a bold series of measures to make wine ‘at least 50% less fun than it is now inside two years’ with plans to hit a final target of 0% fun by 2030.
As of 2023, wine regions will be allowed to produce wine with enjoyment levels as low as 0.5% and still put the appellation on the bottle.
‘Consumers are increasingly looking for low- or no-fun products,’ said commissioner Nolo Heddaycke. ‘And it’s essential that wine learns from its mistakes of the past and gives customers what they want.
‘Even if they’re wrong and it destroys our credibility in the process.’
Critics have questioned whether it’s right to be able to put famous regions such as Bordeaux or Sancerre on the label when the contents are so fundamentally different.
‘Obviously, we could never permit our hallowed regions to appear on zero fun wines,’ said Heddaycke. ‘That would be disastrous.
‘But once you get over 0.5% it’s amazing – the wines have a definite unifying typicity.
‘They’re all undrinkable.’
Better than Chianti
Marketing guru and general irritant Mark Eting-Spend said he thought the move brought European wine ‘bang in step’ with current trends.
‘Consumers are desperate to remove joy from their lives – and to be seen to do so,’ he told Fake Booze. ‘In the past they’d have achieved that by drinking Chianti. But these new products offer a great joyless alternative that doesn’t strip all the enamel from your teeth.
‘Just most of it’.
‘Entertainment is fatal’
The drinks industry generally has come under increasing pressure to encourage lower enjoyment levels for health reasons.
‘Normal wine leads to socialising, which our research shows is heavily linked to fun,’ explained Ethel Asser-Tait, advisor to the Social Health Institute and Testing Executive (SHITE).
‘Since anyone who’s ever enjoyed themselves has died at some point, we can clearly conclude that entertainment abuse is incredibly dangerous, even fatal.’
According to Asser-Tait, drinking low- and no-fun wines won’t necessarily make people live longer, ‘but it will definitely feel like it.’
Green campaigners have also given their support to the latest move. ‘The wine industry releases 1.8 trillion litres of carbon dioxide a year into the atmosphere through fermentation,’ said Extinction Rebellion’s Greta Thunfisch.
‘And significantly more than that in the hot air emissions created by millions of journalists, sommeliers and brand managers posing as wine consultants.’
Shampagne Shuper Cuvée
Wine appellations have been working on subtle changes to hint at the wine’s origin, while retaining a point of difference from wines at normal levels of enjoyment.
These range from Bore-deaux and Baro-low to Shampagne and Chianti-frees.
Fake Booze ran into 24-year-old yoga influencer Joanna Public outside its local Pricefixer supermarket, loading 24 cans of Blank Talon hard seltzer into her Nissan Prolapse.
‘I couldn’t give a monkeys what they call them,’ she said. ‘I won’t buy them anyway.
‘Wine’s for old people – like over 30 or something.’