The University of California, Davis (UC Davis) offers students the opportunity to take wine courses. As KOVR CBS Sacramento reports, underage students who are enrolled in the classes are not allowed to taste the wine, or as Professor of Enology Andrew Waterhouse put it, “We can not allow any student under 21 to put wine in their mouth.” UC Davis is now cosponsoring a bill that would let students under 21 put wine (and beer) in their mouths. Responsibly, of course.
Professor Waterhouse, a wine chemist, told KOVR, “This bill would allow us to provide the students with wine to taste and for them to taste it, without any legal consequences.” When he said “taste,” he really did mean taste. As KOVR puts it, “The bill isn’t a free pass to let underage students drink,” and notes that the bill is being referred to as “The Sip and Spit Bill.” UC Davis Legislative Consultant Adrian Lopez told the station there would be restrictions – the alcohol would have to be in the possession of the professor and it can only be dispensed in an academic setting. But will college students rally behind the idea of receiving alcohol even though they’re underage?
Of course they will. One such student, 20-year-old Connor Bockman, told CBS Sacramento, “I think it’s a great idea. It really inhibits my not being able to taste these wines.” His classmate, 20-year-old Jaclyn Cubillas, said, “This is not to drink in class. This is simply to utilize our senses.” KOVR notes that 12 other states are considering similar legislation. As for the bill in California, it will be voted on later this month.
More info: KOVR