Ready for a wine quiz?
Look at a label and define these terms: Barrel fermented. Bottle aged. Old vine. Vineyard. Reserve.
Surprise: There's no correct answer.
That might change.
Evocative but ill-defined terms have proliferated on labels as wineries seek to distinguish themselves from the competition. Now, regulators' proposals to sharpen wine label definitions have incited industry debate and gone global.
"It's already time consuming to get labels approved, so the more restrictions they put on, that's an issue, " Laurie Kelsey, of the Kelsey See Canyon Vineyards, in San Luis Obispo, Calif., said Wednesday. "I would hope that whatever they do doesn't make it more complicated."
Nonetheless, a Treasury Department agency is considering proposals to tighten certain wine label definitions. Dozens of wineries and wine industry organizations, and several foreign governments including Australia and New Zealand, have weighed in.
For more, see: Stricter wine labeling rules? Makers say put a cork in it