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Enigma Called a Label

You enter a supermarket. Its a holiday and you would like to share the moments of joy with the closest members of your family. Wine, that is what youre looking for. You stop in front of the shelf with wine and your initial euphoria slowly becomes a unsolvable problem. Which wine should you choose from hundreds of offered ones?

You would like to taste something new, you turn around and unsuccessfully look for someone that might give you advice. You grasp the bottle with the most beautiful label, and the price is acceptable as well. You think youve solved the problem, but your well planned event was destroyed by the taste of wine that you bought in the supermarket the day before. You accept the situation, but you ask yourself a question. What should I do next time not to make a mistake?


According to consumers, while selecting wine their attention is caught by different and original packaging, while a golden colour makes extremely high scores. But, although the clothes do not make a product, the next time you should better read the label on the bottle of wine, since it may give you information according to which you may recognize the wine you were looking for.

All the wines made of one grape variety are called variety wines. If you are a certain variety lover then your search becomes simple. It would be enough to read the name of wine on the front label (grape varieties) and you wouldnt be much wrong, irrespective of a wine producer. If the wine is sold under another commercial name, turn the bottle and read the label on the back and in most number of cases you will read what varieties the wine was made of. In accordance with the effective law, wine may be called as the grape variety it is made of only if it has a protected geographic origin, but this rule is not fully complied with in our country.

The next data that can be found on the front label refer to the quality category of wine. In terms of quality, wines are divided in table wines, wines with a geographic origin, quality wines with a geographic origin and top quality wines with a geographic origin. The first condition so that wine could be classified in a category is to have a geographic origin, since it guarantees that the grapes it is made of were harvested from a certain geographic region and that the production was controlled as well. After that, wine is evaluated by the state committee consisting of top enologists in the country. Wines that get 17,5 points at most (out of possible 20) are classified as table wines, wines that get between 17,5 and 18,5 are classified as quality wines and wines that get more than 18,5 points are classified as top quality wines. If the label says that the wine is top quality wine that means that it is the result of the evaluation made by independent experts, not by a producer itself.

The mandatory data on the main label include the name of a producer, alcohol contents and contents expressed in litres.

Although you have obtained basic information on the wine in the bottle by reading the front label, you may find all other information on the back label. According to data obtained in researches, in the most number of cases consumers said that they would like to read where the wine came from on the back label (preferably to see a map). However, the map on the back label may be found only if the wine has a protected geographic origin. The name of the region where the grapes are grown is indicated for table wines, the name of a sub-region is indicated for quality wines and viticulture region for top quality wines. If the wine has a geographic origin, the label must contain the number of a decision issued by the relevant ministry. Along with the number of the decision, the serial number of the bottle must also be indicated since the decision is issued for a certain quantity of wine and it must not exceed the total quantity of wine that a producer registered for protection. It means that all bottles in the series must have the same contents and quality.

If a producer bottles the wine imported from another country in bulk quantities under its label, such data must be indicated on the back label, but most producers do not abide by this rule.

The second most important information, in consumers opinion refers to food the wine is served with. Since the space in the back label is limited and the label is smaller than the front one, you will not be able to find a complete list of food the wine goes well with but you will have the basic guidelines. The rest is left for your choice and senses.

As an important piece of information, consumers indicated the temperature at which the wine is served as well, which in most number of cases may be found in the labels, and they would also like to know the type of glass the wine is drunk from. Consumers are by rule attracted by a card with additional information hanging around the bottle neck (the so-called neck ringer), since they expect they will find out more information than the ones indicated in the label.

The Law on advertising governs the contents of the label, and your taste the contents of the bottle.

Good luck in making a choice!