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Glossary

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Fighting Varietal

This term was coined in the 1980s to describe a new category of wines, labeled as varietals but priced nearly as inexpensively as generics (e.g., "Mountain Chablis" or "Hearty Burgundy"). Glen Ellen was one of the first to sell good quality Chardonnay and Cabernet for $4 to $6 per bottle. Since then, the category has expanded; it includes varietals such as Merlot, producers from regions as far-flung as Chile, Australia and the south of France, and prices up to nearly $10 per bottle. But the concept is the same: a varietal wine of good quality at an everyday price.

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