Alright- so I couldn’t resist the play on words here in reference to Boz Scaggs music and now winemaking activities. I’m a Boz fan from back in his heyday during the 70’s. So of course when I saw he had started a wine label I wanted to get the lowdown and find out does he have his own winery or is he a custom crush client? Here is how I found out.
The TTB, which is short for Alcohol & Tobacco Tax & Trade Bureau regulates all alcoholic beverage industries in the US at the federal level. As a part of this process they issue what are known as label approvals. Any alcoholic beverage that will be sold for consumption must obtain a label approval. The TTB maintains all of these records and has their public cola registry available for doing web searches of their approved labels database.
This is where I went to look up information on Scaggs Vineyard labels. Simply by entering in their product name of Scaggs Vineyard I was then given a list of 13 labels that have been approved for that criteria. From there I viewed a few of them to find out the details about where the wine was bottled. The TTB’s regulations require the bottling winery to acquire label approvals for all wines they bottle, so even if a winery had received some wine from another winery to bottle for them they would still be responsible to obtain the label approval for it.
As I viewed the winery information for the label approvals for Scaggs Vineyard I found the answer to my question. Currently Mr. Scaggs does not operate his own winery but rather has established the custom crush style agreement with established wineries to make and bottle his wines for him This clarified information comes from two places in the label approval details. First there is the basic permit information. This is most commonly the winery’s name. (in some cases it will be the corporate identity) When I found the name of another winery there this gave me the first part of the answer to my question.
Next I viewed the actual label itself, and in particular what is called the name and address statement. This most commonly appears on the back label of a wine. The word I was looking for in this statement was “produced”. And indeed that is what appeared there, “produced and bottled by Scaggs Vineyard”. The answer to my question was now fully addressed. What does the word “produced” have to do with that? The TTB definition for use of that word on a wine label name and address statement is that at least 75% of the wine blend must have been fermented at the same winery bottling site. So in other words, Mr. Scaggs did not ferment, or make the wine at his own winery site, then ship it over to this other winery for bottling. (which could have been the case, many wineries do this.)
Overall I was satisfied with the quick and easy results of my search. I not only learned some information about where Scaggs Vineyard wines are currently being made, but I also became familiar with the styles of wine that I’m assuming Boz likes. The lowdown on any US made wine is just that easy to research using the TTB’s site.
Here is their link for all those curious for these lowdown types of details on their favorite wines: https://www.ttbonline.gov/colasonline/publicSearchColasBasic.do