Monday, December 21, 2015

Bye, Bye Bocksbeutel

Red Baron was shocked when he read in the Badische Zeitung that the good old Bocksbeutel bottle will change shape. So far according to Wikipedia the Bocksbeutel is a type of wine bottle with the form of a flattened ellipsoid or in uncovering the original meaning: with the form of a billy goat's scrotum.

Traditional Bockbeutel bottle (©Wikipedia)
In Europe white wine is more and more bottled in bottles with screw caps. While traditional wine drinkers still swear by the traditional cork they are sometimes annoyingly confronted with a wine having a corky taste. The screw cap for white wine is a boon for vintners, wine merchants, sommeliers, and consumers. So when the Franconian vintners had to change the rim of the Bocksbeutel anyway why not change its form at the same time?

It was not an inhabitant of Franconia but Hamburg's star-designer Peter Schmidt who convinced the president of the Bavarian State Institute for Viticulture Hermann Kolesch to change the dotty image of the Bocksbeutel, a bottle being round, sedate, and a little dusty. Up to now Hamburgers were knowledgeable about the form of beer and certainly of rum bottles although with the climatic change they will possibly grow a Sylvaner south of Hamburg on the slopes of the Harburger Berge by 2100.

The new "Bocksbeutel" bottle (©dpa)
Well, I have to admit that Professor Schmidt was born in Bayreuth, Franconia, where however beer is the favorite drink. So far he had been famous for his design of flacons for perfumes. Now we are faced with an elegant designer bottle of an edged shape, but according to my taste somewhat sterile for it no longer has the faintest resemblance to a ram's appendage. Are we still allowed to call the new bottle a Bocksbeutel? Red Baron has no high hopes humming the Sinatra tune:

Stead of feelin' sad, just remember that ram
Oops, there goes another ... piece of German tradition.

Nostalgia: The bulbous bottle over W├╝rzburg

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