Champagne drinkers may soon taste the fruits of of a French government initiative to welcome new farmers into the exclusive club of those allowed to call their sparkling white wines Champagne, with a capital C. As demand skyrockets, a list has been drawn up of 40 communities that might be annexed in the largest extension of Champagne country in 8 decades. But the scheme has left unanointed farmers in an uproar.
“We have exactly the same soil as the areas that were chosen, the same sun, the same beautiful hills,” one of many snubbed farmers lamented. “It’s like the Miss World contest," said the head of the champagne-makers trade group. "All the contestants think they are the most beautiful.” He said the selection method was “scientific,” though, the Times notes, both the names of the panel and the selection process were secret.