For the grump, the snark and the sulky drinker in your life.
I’m not sure how or when wine snarkiness started. Retro images overlaid with coy references to drinking have been around since the early 2000s, followed by the ubiquitous someecards in which irreverent drinking was a common theme, circulating the Internet circa 2006. Last year, a story in Wine Enthusiast magazine suggested the “wine mom meme” gave the movement some legitimacy. Urbandictionary, the story reported, coined the term “wine mom” in 2015—and it’s still going strong, as evidenced by Instagram accounts such as @mommywinetime (267K followers) and @mom.whine.repeat (111K followers).
My research was motivated by a review forwarded to me, written by a Texas blogger whose seems to be making a tradition this time of year of trashing the Texas reviewer for Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine Book (full disclosure: that is me). As I did last year, I scanned his remarks, noted numerous factual errors, rolled my eyes and put an extra-long pin in my Voodoo doll while muttering his name. Just jokin.’
But it did cause me to scan “the Internets” looking for the prevalence of this sort of behavior, my thinking in line with classic Pete Wells, the New York Times food critic known for skewering Guy Fieri’s restaurant and the considerably more posh Per Se (the latter review not as much as classic as the Fieri: The Texas blogger might take note on how to really do a good take down). My “snarky wine” Google search led me to a few sites, such as The Wine Snark, and mostly down a rabbit hole of not reviews, but wine-related merchandise that helps drinkers say what’s on their minds. Just in case, ya know, they’re not a blowhard with a blog.
Since it’s approaching that time of year, some of you might need some nifty ideas for the gnarly wine drinker in your life. So here’s a quick tour of what you might find. If you’re looking for something for the rotten-tomato-throwing people in your life, a lump of coal will do.
In a similar vein, I found This Might Be Wine: A Mandala Coloring Book For Adults Who Love Wine, featuring 35 designs with large-print funny wine quotes. 74 pages; $6.99.
#Winelife A Snarky Adult Coloring Book by We 3 Coloring Press says it’s “a funny and relaxing coloring book for stress relief, wine illustrations and designs to color.” Well, OK. 80 pages; $11.99.
Home and hearth is where a lot of this “sip happens” (as more than one decorative item or T-shirt declared)—in everything from glassware to fridge magnets.
From the venerable Susquehanna Glass Company, “Alexa, Pour More Wine” a 19-ounce stemmed wine glass is $16.
“I Had to Deal With People Today” 15-ounce stemless tumbler from Rebel Villa, pretty much sums it up for everyone (price n/a: currently sold out).
On Zulily.com, Fred & Friends’ Wine Lines are rubber/silicone markers that wrap around the bowl of your glass, identifying it at a party while also letting folks know your state of mind.
Sipping This features apparel, gifts and lots and lots of funny, quotable (some not publishable) party coasters. $10 for a pack of four.
Kraft-paper wine totes from Pretty Alright Goods say what’s on your mind and probably that of your recipient. $7. Snarky Hapa offers a couple of pretty pricy totes ($30) with some pretty spicy notes. Made of polyester, the producer (artist?) hand-presses each bag per order with a special ink that prevents cracking and peeling.
Canadian gift company Sacha and Co., has a canvas parenting tote bag (36″w x 41″ L) on sale for $25.50 (CAD). Also from the site, the “Go Away I’m Introverting” 12-ounce insulated wine tumbler in five colors. ($22.95 CAD)
Planners get into the game, too, with this set of 13 stylized stickers from the Wine Diva ($3.40)
Group Therapy Wine offers a set of nine glass retro fridge magnets for “those fluent in sarcasm.” About an inch each, handmade in Texas and backed by strong rare-earth magnet; $16. A lot funnier than other stuff passing off as Texas wine humor.