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

Thursday, 21 December 2017

Aldi 4 Champagne 0

This is not a happy start to the Christmas for Champagne's legal eagles – or should I say legal phoenixes..... as the Champagne authorities (CIVC) have lost another major court case.  

The CIVC took legal action against Aldi, the discount supermarket chain, for selling Champagner Sorbet in their German stores . The CIVC brought the action claiming that Aldi were benefitting from the association with Champagne – the sorbet contained 12% Champagne. Initially the CIVC won an injunction to stop Aldi selling the product.

However, on appeal the European Court of Justice has ruled against Champagne. Ironically Aldi have long since stopped selling this product. 

Read the details here in The Drinks Business.  

It would be interesting to know what percentage of Champagne needs to be in a Champagne sorbet for the CIVC to accept that it can, in their view, be called a Champagne sorbet. It cannot surely be 100% as recipes for Champagne sorbet include other ingredients in addition to Champagne. One recipe I have seen calls for the Champagne to be boiled up to reduce the alcohol so as to assist freezing.   

Back in 2015 the CIVC failed in its attempt to force Champagne Jayne to give up her work name. 



Graham said...


Interesting. The law seems to be evolving on this one. One wonders if Babycham would have been closed down under this approach - though I suppose the point there was that many purchasers did not realise they were buying cider - even the revised advertising tag "the genuine champagne perry" was probably passing off. How many pubgoers knew/know what perry is?

The lawyers for these organisations can get too gungho - after all they have to justify their own existence and remuneration and, once flagrant breaches have been closed down, you need to look elsewhere. "Champagne Sorbet" that is 12% Champagne is always going to be a borderline case.

Best wishes for Christmas - will you be in SE London for the festivities like us?


Jim's Loire said...

Thanks Graham. Having 12% Champagne in the sorbet is as you note – borderline. Babycham didn't contain any Champagne, so this case is different. Not sure whether the CIVC was demanding that only a sorbet made solely from Champagne can be called a Champagne sorbet. Strikes me that this case is a nonsense and that the court's final judgment is correct.

Best wishes for Christmas.