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Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert Fail the Taste Test: A Run-up to the Reveal of Cornell’s New Grape Names

Last July, Cornell University asked the public to suggest names for two new grape cultivars known as NY95 and NY76. The contest drew over 1,000 entries from wine lovers on every continent, excepting Antarctica.

While the winning names for the red and white wine grapes won’t be announced until Thursday, February 7 at the Viticulture 2013 conference in Rochester, NY, two of the losers — rather, runners-up — can be revealed now: Colbert Red and Stewart White.

Colbert Red and Stewart White

Professors Bruce Reisch and Anna Katharine Mansfield describe the wine made from the two new grapes and why Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart didn’t pass the sniff test.

Other names that came close but didn’t quite have the right bouquet:

  • Most common:  Big Red
  • Most random: Floridian Dew 
  • Most fun to say:  Zitrustaminer
  • Most culturally relevant:  Edehka Gakwa (“the sun” in the Native American Cayuga language) and Tkwëhtä’ë:’ (“red” in Seneca)
  • Best regional:  Gorgess
  • Chilliest:  Coldaroma 
  • Most practical:  Sensibility
  • Best accent: Newyorka 
  • Best fashion sense:  Leatherstocking Allure
  • Worst fashion sense: Velour
  • Most political: Obama White and Romney Red
  • Scariest: Viampirat
  • Clumsiest: Bumble
  • Most ambitious:  Elderclimber
  • Best wordplay:  Berry My Heart
  • Greenest:  Orgarnet
  • Most appetizing: Confitnoir
  • Least appetizing: Blue Puker
  • Best suggestion inspired by a song:  Red Toupee or Dark Side of the Wine
  • Best suggestion inspired by an animal: Ghost Deer White

Research efforts in viticulture and enology at Cornell’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences goes back to the early 1900s, when a table grape named Goff was released at the Experiment Station in Geneva, NY. Since then, nearly 60 new table, juice and wine grape varieties have been released.

The value of wine produced from Cornell release Cayuga White, a 1972 release, contributes $12-15 million in revenue annually in New York.

More information on other grape releases from Cornell

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