...you flood the market and you devalue it – is our headliner today, which has become the cause of excess, mediocrity and stereotypical winemaking over the last three decades in today's globalised world. It is no longer just the phenomenon that so many wise voices warned of, but has become the everyday code of the masses. The mention of moving in the niche has withered into a platitude. Only those who committed themselves to the stable odour of conformity lost their identity, but ultimately found their essence in identification; in all areas. The year is 2024 and is only a few hours away.
We realise that the fantastic glory and radiant majesty of meteoric life no longer exists: Once carried on by the holy monasteries and their austerity of winemaking degenerated into a disdainful phrase, the everyday drink of wine was to be staged. Nowadays, winegrowers and designers are no longer afraid to put up simple nonsense and graphic sleight of hand.
Renowned wineries after the secularisation of the West, which relied on vineyard sites through displacement and greed, have been shrinking their production for years and it is not uncommon to hear that harvested quantities end up in municipal sewage treatment plants because they simply can no longer sell their broth.
There is too much of everything and this phenomenon is widespread. The markets collapsed within half a decade; the beautiful new stylish wine shops with investor money didn't help, nor did the prostitution of sales via the discounters. The market gets what it deserves. It has gone so far that wine is now being de-alcoholised in order to please a wider audience. Everything between serving and self-correction is involved, which lowers costs and pulverises one's own philosophy.
Alongside this degradation of class are the modern harlequins and court jesters of the so-called centres of trends. The more colourful the label, the more profane the content, and the same goes for the claqueurs, who kowtow not only to the wine producers but also to their fickle and capricious guests in the restaurants. Losing face no longer plays a role today, because what do I care about my ramblings from yesterday? So it all fits together.
This suspicion of love in reverse describes an attitude that is symptomatic of the culinary world as a whole. If you have a backbone, you don't score any points, but only the best-fit dazzler confuses and is usually just the product of his own parents' schnitzel knocking; loud-mouthed and not to say terribly provincial.
Smoothed sentences and manners have crumbled into a scarce commodity; this tendency is certainly also due to the less moderate consumption of mind-expanding substances by the makers in order to conceal their own frustration. Shame is weakness.
Without lapsing into sadness, one can enjoy the regularity with which supposed glare grenades reach the end of their careers through profanity and their big mouths. They have fallen too quickly and too easily into the trap of success, because fame is the true punishment of talent.
It is not uncommon for these characters to have a tendency towards narcissism, which is interpreted as positive by the so-called critics or court reporters. In addition to the employees, whether male or female, because the investors/owners are never in the front row, it must be acknowledged that the colourful ink on their skins is more of a distraction from the essentials, namely the service. So-called individuality has been perverted into uniformity everywhere. As irrelevant as some wines multiplied by five on the wine list.
By the glass requires courage and courage is work that not everyone is into, because only the fast-selling wine is the best wine. In any case, the initial ambition of overestimating oneself is eroded within months. It sometimes hurts to admit to yourself that you have failed hard. But it was always the others.
These oh-so-clever juice farm winemakers and restaurateurs are joined by the developers, coaches and freelancer bubbles, who actually only bring three of their 23 ideas to the final, celebrating themselves enormously for the jack-of-all-trades they are. One lie is ironed out by the next lack of substance; the experts always get everything right and the hackneyed phrase sustainability is pseudo-intellectual trickery, greenwashing and just plastic-statements in general. Many a house will have to pull the ripcord due to the new tax increase next month. Possibly not for the worse, as one zombie is already in the process of dying. Brand disloyalty, a lack of awareness for the region and this dreadful arrogance have paved the way for this, which restaurateurs and guests can now mourn independently of each other. The destruction of the classic pub began way back in the 1990s.
It is good to see that today it is no longer just cis-men who are being targeted, but also women and members of the third sex. This equalising justice is a delight to follow and cannot be surpassed by an energetic commitment to chopping weeds in the vineyard. The discipline of consistency, of simply not revealing too much about oneself and letting the pure product speak for itself, was once, when one began working in viticulture 30 years ago, respect for those who managed and maintained their business in a contemporary way over generations. We should therefore not be surprised if not only the quantity of winegrowing changes in the coming years, but also a necessary wildfire. With the conclusion that in 1850 there were still around 330 indigenous grape varieties in cultivation in Germany, today we are only talking about around 35 leading grape varieties. It goes without saying that the diversity is stuck above that, and this is happening everywhere in old Europe.
For this reason, Antique Viticulture went to Greece in 2012 to completely renounce this degradation without being a revolutionary.
And the next monster is already waiting in the wings. The fungus-resistant grape varieties from the training centres and vine nurseries are serving as compliant instruments for the new generation of lazy winemakers. Attack the wack. It has always been like this; timeless. The crown belongs only to those who remain genuine.