Poll shock: 71% of French folk don't know their wine

PARIS - It is enough to make you choke on your Chablis.

In France, the land of good food and world-famous wine, seven out of 10 people admit they are far from connoisseurs when it comes to the grape.

Responding to the question, "Do you have the feeling you have a good knowledge of wine?", a surprising 71 per cent of French people replied in the negative, with only 3 per cent saying they had "a lot" of knowledge.

It appears that social class has a great deal of influence over one's wine appreciation: 43 per cent of white-collar workers claimed to be connoisseurs, but only 16 per cent of blue-collar employees did so.

Polling company Viavoice said this not only showed a "very elitist" approach to wine in France, but also the "real or imagined feeling for several households faced with tight budgets that they cannot afford quality wine".

Viavoice surveyed 1,015 adults between May 28 and 30 for the poll which was published in the Terre de Vins magazine yesterday.