Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Lost in Translation #637

[posted by Callimachus]

While looking for something else, I came across this little site from a French wine-making family.

Look at the sidebar box on the left. The English translation of the whole site is a bit spotty ("visits of Monday at Friday, weekend and groups on only go") and perhaps was done with a software program.

The winery's motto seems to be "Collecting Windfallen wood High-class wines in Burgundy."

Which hardly makes sense unless you know that "windfallen wood" is the literal meaning of the noun chablis in French. The wine Chablis -- evidently the thing the Web site meant to name -- was named for a small town near Paris which for aught I know got its name as a place where people gathered firewood.

I'm not a wine-drinker, so it amuses me to think that people who order a glass of the finest Chablis are really calling up a shot of "deadwood."