Salary, Wine As

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

The practice of paying workers in wine is an old one (and certainly older than the payments in salt from which the word ‘salary’ is derived). In Ancient persia, for example, wine rations were strictly ordered and were often far in excess of any individual’s possible personal consumption.

More recently, labourers, and in particular grape-pickers on the bigger bordeaux estates, would expect to receive some quantity of wine (rarely of great quality and often lowly piquette) in addition to wages.

The most notorious, and now outlawed, instance of paying workers with deliberately stupefying quantities of wine was the so-called dop system once prevalent in south africa.