Jun 10, 2016

Sex sells! Wine is no exception.

Have you ever heard of a grape variety called Domina? Well, no worries, Domina only plays a minor role in the German wine market and has only locally some importance. The total vineyard area of Domina is about 400 hectares and almost 85% (340 ha) are planted in Franconia (Franken). Here it has got some awareness as this region originally is a designated white wine region and yes, Domina is a red variety.

Bocksbeutel of a single-grape wine, made of the variety Domina
Typically wines made from Domina are deep red, almost black, full bodied but earthy and high in acid and tannins. Earthy and smoky flavors, paired with dark fruit like blackberry make up their bouquet. They usually don’t reach to the elegance of a Pinot Noir (aka Spätburgunder), which is also widely grown here, but nevertheless it has got its fan base among the red wine connoisseurs. This is why you find lots of pure Domina wines in Franconia, whereas in other regions it is often used as a partner in blends to take advantage of the dark color and its extracts.

So, where is the hook to the headline? What is so sexy about this all? Well, in Germany the word Domina nowadays has quite a juicy sound. The original meaning of it (abbess) is not in use anymore but it is used now for a dominant lady in a sexual meaning (in English: Dominatrix). Think of black leather, strong and dominant attitudes, that’s what the Domina wines are associated with. What a marketing coup, isn’t it?

Well, to come to the defense of the cultivator of the grape, Peter Morio, when he crossbred this grape from its parents the Blauer Portugieser and Pinot Noir back in 1927 the word Domina still got its original meaning. What a prospective naming!

Billboard ad of Domina wines in the cooperative winery of FranconiaToday, with respect to our understanding of self-determination and the right of sexual autonomy, the sexual card isn’t played much in the marketing of the Domina wines anymore, but recently I found an old billboard with an ad for Domina wines, leading the way down to the cellars of a big cooperative winery. At least this made me quite curious about what I would be faced with in the deep dark vaults of the cellar. So you see, it still works!

In other words: Ten weeks of workout can make you feel sexy again, so does one bottle of Domina.