Hanging from the ceiling of the English Market alleys at the moment are Michael MacSweeney's photographs of all sorts of people (the title link gives a bit more information). They seem to be advertising anonymity and individuality, and celebrating them. Hurrah!
In our continuing efforts to do the same (celebrate anon. and indiv., &c.) I tried a bunch of samples from Italy in the week. Out of six bottles, some red, some white, the really lifeless one was the one with the biggest appellation/brand: the Chianti. It wasn't even strikingly bad, just dull and cardboardy.
Producers who know that their wine will sell because it's got words on the label that constitute a brand (big European appellations, chiefly) are responsible for some very boring tastings chez Bubble. Of course the good qualities of the bottles that are well made shine all the brighter when you've been through a few cynically mediocre ones. Which of the hang-ups are shiners, I wonder?