That's what's going on in a feud between two obscure French wine regions, Bugey and Die. A fine story by Wink Lorch in Wine Searcher last week explained the feud. Let me summarize it for you from an American perspective.
Cerdon is a small area within the Bugey region where vintners make pink Méthode Ancestrale sparkling wine -- bubbly made without added sugar, by stopping fermentation before bottling and allowing it to continue fermenting in the bottle. The main grape is Gamay, the grape of Beaujolais.
Die is a slightly larger region that makes white Méthode Ancestrale sparkling wine mainly from Muscat. But growers there have Gamay, so they want to make pink Méthode Ancestrale bubbly. They would call it Clairette de Die rosé, so it's not like anyone would believe it comes from Cerdon, which calls its pink bubbly Bugey-Cerdon.
Seems harmless, and the French government gave the Die growers the go-ahead. However, the Cerdon growers filed an appeal. They're upset. Their logic is exactly as I stated in the first paragraph: "You can't make pink Méthode Ancestrale bubbly because we make pink Méthode Ancestrale bubbly. We were here first!"
Cerdon takes this position even though sparkling wine made in Die was described by Pliny the Elder. Seriously!
|I wonder if there's an AOC for this|
According to the story, Cerdon makes less than 2 million bottles of pink bubbly annually. Apparently growers are afraid that Die's plans for making about 1 million bottles of pink sparkling wine represent a threat to their business. They would rather spend their money on legal fees to prevent Die from expanding its business, which would build more of a worldwide market for pink Méthode Ancestrale bubbly, than on marketing their own wines.
Those wacky French.