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Posts Tagged ‘Fat Bastard’

Truly sassy wines

On Wednesday December 7th, 2011 the New York Times printed an article about wines behaving badly, so to speak in the piece aptly named Wine Stops Minding Its Manners. The picture features two wines, the same two wines depicted above, Bitch and Fat Bastard. I must say, it’s clever and cheeky and an absolutely brilliant way to market. When something is pushing boundaries, people talk and it spreads.

The article was interesting discussing the “budget friendly” wines and how the label markets itself. The name is so catchy and saucy, how could it not catch someone’s eye? I have often seen Bitch at the Hops and Grapes in Glassboro, often very curious of the contents sealed by the cap.

“It’s actually a good place to see cultural fault lines shift,” said Robert C. Lehrman, whose compnay Lehrman Beverage Law, advises clients on government regulations. “Because of a series of commercial speech decisions, not many things are off limits anymore.” says the NYT article

The piece inspired me. I purchased the two wines, with the question in the forefront of my mind– are the names overcompensating for a poor product? That question is generally applied (in the most cliched way possible) to the male persona of gaudy cars and certain body parts, in the same turn, can it apply to wines? Wines with ‘tude and nothing to back it up.

I took my sleuthing skills to the local liquor store and purchased a 2009 Aragon Grenache Bitch, whose pink label on the back, by the way, is hysterical (with repeated “bitch” filling the back), and the pink Fat Bastard with a gold hippo adorning the label. Bitch will put you back $11.99 while Fat Bastard will keep your wallet feeling heavy after spending a mere $6.99.

The first wine I tried was the Bitch, I’m always up for good confrontation and I figured I would get her sassy attitude out of the way. Let me tell you, she was less confrontational than expected. In all honesty, she was okay. You get what you pay for, which is an acidic and alcohol aftertaste of red wine. It’s okay to drink but not terribly high quality. It’s slightly bitter and dry. Don’t misunderstand me, it isn’t a horrible wine, it just isn’t great. It’s very much a “drink to get drunk wine.” After a few glasses you might go from proper lady to bitch in 3.5 glasses.

Fat Bastard was next, and while it didn’t ask me to “Get in my belleh” the pink of the label and the actual wine were slightly overwhelming and thus it was enticing, especially as a female. If I didn’t know any better I would think the wine was marketed towards both my age group and gender. The back label explains the name equipped with the French accent that coined it, “Now zat iz what you call eh PHET bast-ard!” (read in a French accent, really over do it.)

Fat Bastard wasn’t as much of a bastard as I expected. Price isn’t everything, folks. This money saver is a light, well-rounded wine. It drinks easy and doesn’t make you want to cringe. I’m honestly very pleased with it and would recommend it for anyone, especially on a tight budget.

I was interested in what my readers had to say and took to Twitter about the matter of vulgarity and wines.

@Blonde_Penguin: @Shanny99 doesn’t bother me. I’ll buy anything if it has good reviews.

@MikePatota: @Shanny99 I think their target audience is younger folks, and for that I wont touch it.

@deabruzo: @Shanny99 I’m intrigued & consider purchasing, it appeals to the non-conformist in me. But I don’t expect it to be good. Quite the opposite.
Whether you agree, or not, these wine companies understand how to market. Even if it’s off-putting I know there’s no way the consumer is not interested. Even the novelty of owning the empty bottle is enough for some people to purchase these wines. Buy them, fulfill your curiosities and shock house guests, but know what you may be getting into. Whether it’s an overcompensating Bitch or an unexpectedly charming Fat Bastard, you have to make your own choices as a consumer.
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