Or, actually, ignore him, which the wine industry seems incapable of doing. Franzia, the man behind Two Buck Chuck, Crane Lake, Forest Glen and a bunch of other cheap wines in the guise of the Bronco Wine Co. loves to throw his success in the faces of the people wine writer David Falchek calls the vinerrati. And they can’t help themselves – foaming at the mouth, spewing venom, and the like whenever Franzia does it.
The latest turmoil (and the cyber either is full of it, from the New York Times to Cincinnati to California) centers around a profile of Franzia that ran in the New Yorker. Two things struck me. First, that an old media property could cause such a stink among so many New Media types, and second, that what Franzia said wasn’t any different from what he has been saying for years and years. And years. He thinks wine is overpriced and that most wine people are phony snobs.
Which is hard to disagree with, given the foolishness that the Wine Curmudgeon sees in the wine business every day. Though, to be fair, The Times’ Eric Asimov notes that Franzia’s motives are far from pure: “He’s not a man of the people making high-quality bottles available for less. He’s a businessman masquerading as a populist for his own benefit, which is fine but his defenders ought to be honest about Mr. Franzia’s motivations.”
Which doesn’t change his message and why the vineratti dislike it so. And nothing will change until all $100 wine is 10 times better than all $10 wine. Until then, Franzia will continue to drive them crazy.