Friday, March 11, 2011


Generally, I don't follow developments in the wine world — I'm not one of those Pademelon wine snobs who fusses over the cork — but I'm troubled by allegations raised in some row between U.S. and Australian wine companies:

The Wine Group of San Francisco caused uproar by releasing a Little Roo label which is strikingly similar to Casella Wines' Yellow Tail, featuring a wallaby. [...] Wallabies, Casella Wines contends, are "indistinguishable to most people" from kangaroos.


What's not to distinguish? The Wallaby's regal bearing? Its grace? Its regard for personal hygiene? (To be an accurate representation, I would imagine that the Kangaroo picture is accompanied by a cloud of buzzing flies, and possibly a few stench lines to drive the point home.)

Do you honestly expect me to believe that people can't tell that — unlike the Kangaroo — the Wallaby is NOT hopping out of the gutter on his way to the bottle shop for another day of drinking away his government assistance cheque?

It's the simplest thing in the world to tell the two creatures apart. One is a quiet, respectful marsupial, and the other resorts to violence at the first opportunity.

I don't know which I would find more offensive, that Casella is assuming that the public at large is as ignorant and inattentive to detail as they are, or that the general public could harbour such a shameful lack of awareness.

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