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Why no Sex?' asks Wine Report Stevenson

Published:  23 July, 2008

Top wine writer Tom Stevenson has used the introduction to the third edition of his annual guide to the wine world, Wine Report 2006, to launch an attack on the Portman Group.

Referring to the problems that Bottle Green's Jerry Lockspeiser had in importing Michigan-based producer Larry Mawby's sparkling wine brand Sex, Stevenson said that the Portman Group had fleshed out' its sensible aims' with some rules that go well beyond the original stated intent'. The author continues: The group should encourage responsible marketing within its core-value positions on responsible drinking and the misuse of alcohol, but I have to ask why it should poke its nose into other areas of marketing and, even if some believe it should, I question its interpretation of its own regulations.'

Stevenson also wondered why wine labels featuring puns and double entendres based on sex (such as Old Tart and Nepenthe Tryst) should be permitted, while the unqualified word Sex has been rendered unfit for British consumption by the Portman Group'.

Wine Report 2006 retails for 9.99 and is published by Dorling Kindersley.