Vino in need of veritas?

Consider this statement:

" ... (O)ver the last 20 years or so, the Washington State Liquor Control Board has gotten pretty casual about enforcing the letter of the law. These days the biggest selling 'wine' in Washington state is the 5-liter boxed product bearing the Franzia label. Retailing for about $8 a box, it bears the description 'table wine with natural flavors.'

"Discard the 'table' and 'natural,' which have no legal meaning at all, and you're left with 'wine with flavors.' Look back up at the definition and you'll see that under Washington state law, Franzia boxes aren't 'wine.' And if they're not wine pure and simple, the law goes on to require that the label must bear 'a truthful and adequate statement of composition.' And even then, such products can be called only 'specialty wine,' if not 'artificial wine' or 'imitation wine."

That's the position taken by writer Roger Downey in a Seattle Weekly commentary.

Agree or disagree, it's quite an interesting topic, particularly with Washington's status as a giant among American wine producing regions.

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