Négociant

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

French term for a merchant and one used particularly of wine merchants who buy in grapes, must, or wine, blend different lots of wine within an appellation, and bottle the result under their own label. Making a perfectly balanced blend from a number of imperfect parts is a potentially noble calling, but one that once provided so many opportunities for adulteration and fraud that it brought the entire profession into question, if not ill repute, at least until the late 1980s. Nowadays, with the bureaucracy involved in the aoc system, cheating requires real ingenuity.