Sunday, June 28, 2009


Which wine would you choose if you were faced with the following descriptions?

Wine #1
Smell- spice and leather
Taste- sweet berry
Aftertaste - chocolate

Wine #2
Smell – mocha and eucalyptus
Taste - over-ripe plums
Aftertaste - black pepper

Wine #3
Smell - tar
Taste - chocolate and black raspberry
Aftertaste - oak and dried herbs

I have smelled lots of wine in my day, sometimes the house wine and sometimes the "pricey" stuff. I cannot smell ANY of the above smells. The smell I can identify is whether it is red or white wine.

I have tasted lots of wine in my day and again I have never been able to isolate a single taste. To me it tastes like either red wine or white wine.

And as for the aftertaste, I usually like it or don't like it, whatever "it" is.

My brother is a wine connoisseur and I have sat in many classes that he has given where wine tasting is part of the learning. But I obviously have not inherited the nose or the taste buds (or the brain, actually,) that my brother has.

The writer of today's wine feature in our newspaper apparently not only has an expert’s nose but he is able to write a whole column in which there is nothing that I understand. But I want to be sure you understand it is not he who is deficient; I am the one lacking something – a gene maybe – for smelling and tasting and understanding wine.

My wine identification skills are limited to knowing red from white, sparkling from still and sweet from dry. I can tell a Chardonnay from a Chablis when I taste them, but that's about as far as it goes. I have no wine sense at all. My only forte is knowing what I like and don't like when I taste it.

The fellow who wrote the wine article is pleased with his column, I'm sure. But he won’t know that the very same article has made me laugh because I perceive it as being full of pompous pronouncements more than anything else. And his very seriousness is what makes me laugh. I don’t think that is the intent of his column but that’s what I get out of it, and reading it sure made my day!

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