ask dr. vinny

Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, or "Vinny" for short. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the technical aspects of winemaking to the fine points of etiquette. I hope you find my answers educational and even amusing. Looking for a particular answer? Check my archive and my FAQs.


Dear Dr. Vinny,

I frequently see “Dr.” in German wine producers’ names. What does that mean? Is it for “Doctor,” as in “Dr. Vinny”?

—Joe L., Toms River, N.J.

Dear Joe,

My title is fake, given to me by the readers who voted to name this chubby-cheeked face “Dr. Vinny” all those years ago.

But the “Dr.” title on all those German wine producers’ names is real. Here in the United States, we tend to call only medical doctors by the title “Doctor.” But in other cultures, like the German, the title “Doctor” often refers to someone who holds a Ph.D. or similar advanced degree.

—Dr. Vinny


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