So this seriously cracked me up. There’s this Chilean wine called Chilensis, which means Chilean Spanish. The language has its colloquialisms, and this winery makes Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Carménère, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah from all different regions in Chile.
But when they brought the wine to the Chinese market, the word Chilensis loosely translates to “f*cking nuts.” Local press articles were all up in arms that it was offensive – and now the wine has gone up HK$10 (before you get overly impressed, that comes out to about $1.28 US)!
According to the article I read, this isn’t the first time a wine name translation has a weird connotation. Chateau Latour, one of the five Bordeaux first growths, doesn’t sell as well as the others possibly because Latour loosely translates to mean “to fall down.” That’s not as bad as “f*cking nuts” obviously, but I guess people would rather not buy into an image of stumbly or uncoordinated losers.
Anyway, one last note about the Chilensis. Some buzzkill of my amusement said in the article’s comments that this would’ve only happened if the wine was called “Chilensin.” Apparently, someone isn’t translating these wines very well overseas, but then I wouldn’t have these funny stories.