|Oh, get a grip, lady!!!
A few years ago, my sister had free tickets to a Wine & Food event or something like that. The tickets were expensive, but they were free to my husband and me, so, of course, we went. When we arrived, we saw a huge hotel ballroom filled with lots of fancy restaurants set up with their signs at little black tables and then bottles of wine that supposedly matched the food perfectly. Also, lots of huge silver buckets at the tables with gallons of warm, old, wine spit. I had never spit out wine before (craziness!), so I wasn’t sure what that was all about at first. It didn’t take long to put it all together when I saw people with their pinkies out, swirling the wine, smelling it and whatnot, then tasting it and spitting it back out. Something so sophisticated quickly turning into something that seemed so savage entertained me. “That Martha Stewart-looking lady in the nice velvet pant suit just spit out her wine. It looks like she was spitting out her tobacco juice. HAHAHAHA!!!” (It became more entertaining the more wine I didn’t spit out, obviously.)
For my sister’s bachelorette party a couple of years ago, we went to a wine bar and had the back room for our little party. That was when I heard the name sommelier for the first time. A sommelier is someone who selects and serves wine, for those of you who don’t already know everything. During the time there, I also learned about wine flights, or a selection of a few small glasses of wine meant for tasting. I learned that Riesling is a sweet wine, white typically goes with fish and poultry and red with meat. I think I may have may have known those last two things before, but I can’t be sure. No, I’m pretty sure I knew that already. I mean, I do go to the grocery store and try the wine samples the nice ladies hand out near the cheese aisle.
I also learned that wine makers are liars. And that it doesn’t matter (to me) if the wine was made last week or during the same year Columbus discovered America. They all taste just about the same. Although I will happily drink a glass, in my opinion, all wine can be summed up in three categories “sweet”, “not-so-sweet” and “This stuff is gross. I am not drinking this one.”
This fact became crystal clear to me after my husband ordered some wine flights as a result of a Groupon he bought. MY HUSBAND IS ADDICTED TO GROUPON. These wine flights came in three different boxes. We thought it would be fun to sit down at our own house, taste the different wines and really try to get this wine thing down. With excitement, we reviewed the “tasting notes” and made some notes of our own (in italics). Maybe you’d like to see them?
|Oh, for the love of Pepto-Bismol….
CHARDONNAY: “Ripe peach, mango and tropical flowers, plus a note of minerality.” Stinkin’ liars! There is no peach in here and you know it! Tropical flowers, my a**!
FUME BLANC: “Tropical fruit, lemongrass and a touch of mineral at the end of the long finish.” Were we supposed to take a long time to finish this one? Dang it. Took me just a few sips. (Okay, I confess, I gulped it all at once like a Gatorade.) Also, I beg you to quit running your mouth about the “lemongrass”. Please.
ZINFANDEL: “Classic zin flavors of strawberries, raspberries and plums.” Were we supposed to taste strawberries, raspberries and plums because that wine totally tasted like that last one with the minerals or whatever. YOU HAD MY HOPES UP THAT I WAS ABOUT TO DRINK A WINE SMOOTHIE!!! The disappointment I’m feeling is IMMENSE!
MERLOT: “This is a Cabernet lovers’ merlot! Full-bodied, with strawberries, cherries, licorice and coffee.” Stop making this sound like a Twizzler latte! You know there are NO CHERRIES in here anywhere! You’re out of control, Tasting Notes Writer. (But, I DO appreciate the fun you let me have by helping me imagine a guy in a turtleneck saying, “Me? Oh, I’m a Cabernet man. Love Cabernet. I guess you could consider me a Cabernet LOVER. HAHAHAHA!!! Guilty! HAHAHA!!! I’m not one to trust anybody, especially when it comes to my wine, but if you say this is a merlot a Cabernet LOVER like me would enjoy…well, who am I to say you’re wrong? Huh? Pour me a glass!”)
CABERNET SAUVIGNON: “Elegant flavors of black berries, black licorice and cocoa powder.” SOMEBODY HOLD ME BACK! HOLD ME BACK! Tasting Notes Writer made my mouth water for some chocolate and gave me nothing but wine that tasted slightly different than the wine I just drank. I do like saying “sauvignon”, however. I may just always order this one so I can say the word. It makes me feel super fancy. Super French, sophisticated and super fancy. Sauvignon. Sauvignon. Sauvignon. Sauvignon. Sauvignon.
VIOLETTA: “Ripe white peaches, orange blossom honey and toasted almonds.” HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! You said TOASTED ALMONDS!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!
Is it too obvious I’m not a wine connoisseur? Are you? Do you have a favorite wine? Please tell me if you do so I can order it when I go out. Tell me so I can make it even less obvious that I’m scouring the price column for a wine that is not too cheap and not too expensive and not too hard to pronounce. Also, tell me so that the waiter thinks he or she is really dealing with a hot shot, you know? I like for waiters to think I’m a hot shot.
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