Ten trivia to titillate
Here are ten examples of wine trivia, fun facts about wine worth sharing, ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous.
- It takes 25 years before a Cork Oak tree is ready to harvest and then it can be harvested every 10 years. This means each tree can be harvested about 10 times during its lifetime.
- Esgana Cão is a Portuguese white grape. Its name translates as “Dog-strangler.” Ask for that in a wine bar near you.
- It was said that Prince Charles runs his Aston Martin DB5 Volante on English wine, but that’s not accurate. It runs on bioethanol made from British wine. British wine isn’t from grapes grown in England, it’s a dubious industrial product made from cheap imported grape juice. English wine is a fine product made from grapes grown in this country. Mind you; he only clocks up 300 miles per year and the car does around five bottles per mile.
- The world’s largest fizz glass was made for Asti Spumante in 2008 and holds the official Guinness world record. Measuring 203 cms tall and 46 cms in diameter, it holds 16 litres of fizz – that’s 22 bottles.
- The world’s highest wine cellar is in Canada, atop Toronto’s CN Tower at 351 metres (1,151 feet). Up in the sky above you are 9,000 bottles.
- The Poet Laureate receives a barrel of Sherry (720 bottles) from the monarchy each year in part payment for compositions rendered, a tradition that dates back to James I in 1619. Carol Ann Duffy’s first cask was a Manzanilla. Her poem, “At Jerez” is printed on the back label of each bottle.
- The official record for the world’s biggest wine tasting is currently held by JD Wetherspoon. They managed to persuade 17,540 people to taste a free glass of Fetzer Coldwater Creek simultaneously across its chain of UK pubs in May 2008.
- The Founding Fathers of the United States of America certainly knew how to enjoy themselves. The bill for the party celebrating their final drafting of the US Constitution in 1787 showed that 55 people enjoyed:
54 bottles of Madeira
60 bottles of Claret
8 bottles of Whisky
22 bottles of Port
8 bottles of Cider
7 full punchbowls “large enough so that Ducks could swim in them.” What was wrong with the beer?
- The late great Madame Lily Bollinger was once asked by a journalist when she personally drank Champagne. She was said to have replied, “I drink it when I’m happy and when I’m sad. Sometimes I drink it when I’m alone. When I have company I consider it obligatory. I trifle with it if I’m not hungry and drink it when I am. Otherwise, I never touch it – unless I’m thirsty”.
- Cartridge ink for your inkjet printer is far more expensive than top vintage Champagne. A well-known brand of ink is £29.00 for 17ml, compared to a bottle of Dom Perignon 2006 at £90.00. An equivalent wine bottle full of ink would cost £1,275. Ink doesn’t taste good and probably lasts less time than the Champagne.
I’ll publish some more random trivia another time. Let me know if you have trivia to share!