Awards and citations:

1997: Le Prix du Champagne Lanson Noble Cuvée Award for investigations into Champagne for the Millennium investment scams

2001: Le Prix Champagne Lanson Ivory Award for

2011: Vindic d'Or MMXI – 'Meilleur blog anti-1855'

2011: Robert M. Parker, Jnr: ‘This blogger...’:

2012: Born Digital Wine Awards: No Pay No Jay – best investigative wine story

2012: International Wine Challenge – Personality of the Year Award

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Olivier Cousin: an update on 'Anjou Pur Breton'

'Anjou Pur Breton' – the offending label

Above is the offending label that could land Olivier Cousin in court in Angers facing a maximum fine of 37,500 and two years in jail. Given that the mention of place and grape variety is not allowed on a vin de table a mild rap over the knuckles might be an appropriate response but certainly nothing more.

I understand that, as of this morning, there have been 500 signatories to the petition in support of Olivier on Sylvie Augereau's Glougueule site. Following a phone call to Olivier yesterday I have updated my Sunday post here giving more background on this affair. My weekly post on Les 5 du Vin also covers this along with the possibly successful attempt in Brussels by the French wine authorities to have thrown out the proposal to limit the use of chaptalisation to wines reaching a potential of 15.5%. This proposal would have ensured that European sweet wines were naturally sweet rather than their sweetness coming from added sugar.


Charles Sydney said...

Been reading various articles on Olivier Cousin (your blog, Jancis' and elsewhere). It's therefore a little difficult to be rude in public, but it's (a) nice PR for him, (b) a bit hard on the Anjou growers who are rebuilding their appellations' image for quality and (c) for the French legal system. Maybe if his wines were upto scratch, they'd get their AOC 'label'....

Jim's Loire said...

Charles – Facing a possible trial is hardly 'nice PR' and in my previous post Cousin claims not to have had his wines turned down at the agrément.

Anonymous said...

I see this post (and others on the subject from other blogs) was months back, but I'm confused about a part of the Cousin story and looking for an answer. Hope the blog can respond to comments from old posts.

I take it that Cousin's issues with the bureaucratic bodies began long before the 'vin de France' regulations allowing for cepage/brand/vintage was instituted. And with or without the changes he could still be wound up in the legal system.

But now that he's able (like all vignerons) to produce without appellation but with a host of other freedoms, does this mark any sort of victory for him? Will he produce under the 'vin de France' mark? Is he doing so? Or is the appellation issue a point of principle for him that he'll continue to fight for?