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February 06, 2014
TTB Allows Use of 'Black Spanish' Label on Wine
by David Furer

The TTB has given administrative approval for the use of 'Black Spanish' to varietally label a wine. In a letter to Lynne Majek of Texas's Majek Vineyad & Winery, Jennifer Berry of the TTB's Regulations & Rulings Division indicated that her office has informed the TTB's labeling division of its decision, one which awaits a lengthy, often costly, approval process in order to be added to the agency's '27 CFF 4.91' list of fully approved Federal Register names.

Berry told Wine Business Monthly that her office received, "a petition containing evidence that the name 'Black Spanish' is a recognized synonym commonly used in Texas for the name 'Lenoir', which is an already approved grape variety name," giving her cause to allow the winery and all other bonded wineries use of 'Black Spanish' as a name. Also known as Lenoir (from its S. Carolina origin) and Jaquez (from it later finding its way to France), the aestivalis/vinifera hybrid is most commonly referred to as Black Spanish.

Majek's effort was designed "to utilize the most familiar name in our area and better to convey the origin of the grape, thought to be brought to America by Spanish missionaries," arguing that "Lenoir, the approved name, did not accomplish these goals." Of Majek's three bottlings of this variety she plans to use 'Black Spanish' on only one of them due to printing considerations though she'll measure customer response to both.

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