Most overused wine quotes and memes revealed



“Life’s too short to drink bad wine” – anonymous

Or listen to that quote on a continuous loop.


“Wine is bottled poetry” – Robert Louis Stevenson

But it’s unlikely the speaker will back it up with anything more meaningful, so counter their shallow observation with Baudelaire’s exhortation:

“It is time to get drunk!
So as not to be the martyred slaves of Time,
get drunk; ceaselessly drunk!
On wine, on poetry, or on virtue as you wish.”

If you can say it in French then appropriate a bottle for yourself by way of a reward.


“There’s more philosophy in a bottle of wine than in all the books in the world,”– Louis Pasteur

It’s a pity you haven’t read more books to find more original quotes though.

“Hide our ignorance as we will, an evening of wine soon reveals it,” as Heraclitus said.


“I drink to make other people more interesting,” – Ernest Hemingway

Sadly, those that like to bandy this about are usually unaware of the irony. Hemingway ranks as one of the most abused literary greats, with boorish, posturing fools prattling on about how much they’d like to be like him or, still worse, actually emulate him – ignorant of the fact that Hemingway would probably have said that if you can’t be your own man, what’s the point?

“Nobody’s going to get me in any ring with Mr. Tolstoy unless I’m crazy or I keep getting better,” he once said of himself. It’s a pity would-be-Hemingways don’t remind themselves of that more often rather than being blinded by their own conceit.


“I drink Champagne when I’m happy…” – Lily Bollinger

The problem here is the sonorous, ponderous delivery some people adopt when intoning the lines as if it’s one of the most profound statements ever uttered or it’s delivered in a fuzzy, feel-good, give-yourself-a-hug, wishy-washy, life-affirming, sing-song, desperately earnest voice. Then they cock their heads at you, smile knowingly and say something like “isn’t that lovely/true/wonderful?” and expect you to be impressed and nod in agreement.

Yes, it’s a lovely quote and yes we know you can recite it by heart or maybe not – it’s hard to say which is worse. Either way you’ve done it to death now and it’s time you stopped.

Counter them with something like this:

“She’s no mistress of mine
That drinks not her wine,
Or frowns at my friends’ drinking motions;
If my heart thou wouldst gain,
Drink thy bottle of Champagne.
‘Twill serve thee for paint and love potions.”

Sir George Etherege, She Would if she Could, 1667


The “wine meme” – endless

“Wine a little, it’ll make you feel better.”
“You had me at ‘wine’.”
“Save water, drink wine.”

The list goes on and, admittedly, some are both true and rather amusing, like this one which neatly summarises what this piece is all about:

wine meme

Take that on board. But sadly many (one might argue the majority) are like these:

wine meme 2

wine meme 3

You can see the thinking here. “Blah, blah, blah, something, something, something, wine. That’ll get me a retweet.”

There’s no substance to them, no imagination or true creative thought. They’re just rubbish; inanity posing as wit and, as the purveyors of this kind of tat aren’t especially discerning, they’re all used far too much. Employ them if you must but remember, he would pun would pick a pocket – choose wisely.

5 Responses to “Most overused wine quotes and memes revealed”

  1. Surely the antidote to that horrible champagne quote are the words of Coco Chanel: “I only drink Champagne on two occasions, when I am in love and when I am not”

  2. Pippa Hayward says:

    How about this for a cautionary piece of advice….

    “If you’re given Champagne at lunch, there’s a catch somewhere ” Lord Lyons in 1981 In Geoffrey Madan’s Notebooks

  3. Mark says:

    I love to cook with wine… sometimes I even add it to the food…

  4. Justin McInerny says:

    I shouldn’t let it bother me but Hitchens’ glib, comments get under my skin. His claim that “Seder at Passover, which is obviously modeled on the Platonic symposium”, seems to be incorrect. What we know as the seder today appears to have started about 576 BCE whereas Plato was not born until around 428 BCE.

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