It's not just that we can make Scottish wine, we do, as the existence of Buckfast tells us. Although we've a certain suspicion that it's not actually the wine that comes from Scotland. But as Adam Smith did say:
By means of glasses, hotbeds, and hotwalls, very good grapes can be raised in Scotland, and very good wine too can be made of them at about thirty times the expense for which at least equally good can be brought from foreign countries.
Given the journalistic tastes of some of us around here we can't quite agree that wine 30 times the price is a good idea. In fact, as with the original injunction, why not do something else and buy 30 times the wine from Bourdeaux. Perhaps, say, grow that barley Scotland does so well and make whisky? Some of which we could trade for wine?
Which brings us to this insistence:
With English fizz more of an emerging category than its entrenched cousin across the channel, the co-founders had to secure the best of the best of British grapes.
Clough had enough vineyards from which to source; in England, he explains, there are about 500, producing enough fruit for, on average, 5m bottles a year, two-thirds of which is sparkling wine.
"One million new vines went into the ground last year, which should result in another 1m bottles within the next seven to 10 years," says Clough.
"The [fermentation process] means that it's a long game, but contrary to what some people think, Britain can produce a premier sparkling wine."
We've no doubt this is possible, our question is why would we bother? Entirely true that what people do with their own resources, their ships they float upon the sea of commerce, are entirely up to them. As long as they are indeed using their own resources, not our.
But still, expensive wine just doesn't seem to be the way to go, even with so many opting for a dry January.