As a sort of introduction: I have recently fallen in love, with wine.
I have also been meaning to start writing in some shape of form for ages.
Thus, this blog.
My friends quickly bore if I get carried away and go on an on about different types of closures and the intricacies of terroir (which I barely fathom); I think all they end up hearing is, “wine wine wine, blah blah blah.”
So, to keep others’ sanity – and invitations to dinner parties – I have learnt not to bang on about it obsessively. This blog will be about wine, but as I have no real credentials to speak about it authoritatively, it will have to be built around how wine and I interact in the world. What I learn about it, which ones make me laugh, which bottles make me poor, the people I drink with, the places I drink, basically: Wine & I.
This makes perfect sense, as despite the competitions, guides, reviews, stars and points, the enjoyment of wine is personal. Here is an example:
I am starting to find out which styles of wine I prefer. A good example is Catherine Marshall’s 2004 Syrah (It’s even better when you find it for R58). Slightly pale, with a dusty elegance dressed in berries. It is the elegance and complexity that cause me to look again, like looking over your shoulder when a beautiful someone passes by. There are other flavours dancing together, and I feel one then the other, spice and fruit, slowly existing and disappearing until I tip my glass again. I know I am not qualified nor experienced enough to start handing out points and stars, but it doesn’t matter, I fucking love it. I can tell it has a certain style and to me it is expressed beautifully.
It also helped that I had the first bottle with good friends. Improve the context, improve the bottle.
The joy I find in wine is not down to finding and listing a bunch of flavours. It is sensing familiar characteristics, and almost watching how they interact with each other. I remember this happening to me for the first time. I had recently drunk a bottle of my favourite Viognier (Spice Route) and was on the lookout for a different one to try. I wish I could remember for certain the one I bought, Porcupine Ridge I think. It was disappointing, with an unpleasantly strong smell of tinned pets food, which was also apparent on the palate. Despite this I was delighted. Amongst the freshly opened tin of Husky aromas, I found a flavour that corresponded with the Spice Route. I didn’t just find the same flavour, but a different expression of it and how when it was when surrounded by different amounts of acidity, sugar, oak, etc. it became rather nasty.
Basically I am having fun with wine, its gurus, its assholes, the learned and the ignorant, the bottles of delight and the hangovers that follow. I am also reading the Great Gatsby, heading to Dubai with a Marimba Band, trying to find a better looking jacket, and contemplating the various uses of the Author. I have decided to record it all for a reason that escapes me now – maybe it is one of those nice packages from the blog awards – or maybe just posterity, fucked if I know. But it keeps me out of trouble and it’ll all be done with a glass in hand.
Let the record begin.