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It occurs to me that economic determinism works both ways. Bordeaux produces great great wine, sure. But the reason it became preeminent is that the region is located by a harbor with easy access to England.

 

 

There's a problem with that argument, which is that other regions with easy historical access to the English market didn't achieve the reputation of Bordeaux. Access was a necessary condition of it becoming one of the world's top wine regions, but it wasn't a sufficient condition.

 

Now all I need is a few good examples, but since I'm multi-tasking all I'm thinking of is that sherry and Madeira didn't achieve comparative enduring success. But there must be more on-point examples--although surely any French or Spanish wine region with ready access to a port is no worse off than Bordeaux.

 

you mean like sherry and Madeira?

 

sneak elides one of the key points - Bordeaux came to prominence not just because it was a good port, but because it was an English possession when this all began

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right. path dependency matters a lot. like a lot a lot.

 

Yes, path dependence in terms of the broad historical context of use, but we have to be careful what we ascribe to geography. If Bordeaux has been regarded as a more prestigious wine region than most Italian (or indeed German) wine regions, how can it be geography, given that other Italian and German products have no trouble circulating?

 

Or, as I said, why is it more geographically advantaged than other French regions?

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sneak elides one of the key points - Bordeaux came to prominence not just because it was a good port, but because it was an English possession when this all began

NOT FAIR! I was just researching that (having thought -- but not having been sure -- that was the case).

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sherry and madeira are especially easy wines to transport - being basically heat stable. Marsala as well.

 

That's also a point against most of the med.

 

Don't forget German wines which did always have good port access being so close to rhine were also historically one of the major wines drunk in the UK.

 

Compare the historical relative popularity of Rhone-Saone valley wines in Paris as compared to London and Bdx

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Yes, historical relationship with England, fair enough.

 

I'm only querying the geography, which sounds uncharacteristically Plotnickian.

How about if I said I meant political geography?

 

 

Then you'll have people complaining you're massaging your position to deal with objections. :D

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Yes, historical relationship with England, fair enough.

 

I'm only querying the geography, which sounds uncharacteristically Plotnickian.

How about if I said I meant political geography?

 

Then you'll have people complaining you're massaging your position to deal with objections. :D

 

I prefer to call it developing and clarifying my position as a result of discussion.

 

ETA -- I.e., the POINT of all this.

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