Monday, June 14, 2010

Proust for winos (or vice versa)


I had a madeleine the other day.

Not the tea cake, but y'know, one of those things that jogs you, like a cobblestone sticking up that catches your foot and makes you stumble into the past. A wine remembered from earlier times, one that conjured up those times. So I thought it would be interesting, amusing and perhaps even illuminating to submit this blog (and myself) to the vinous version of the (in)famous Proust Questionnaire.

Forthwith, rendered into terms propitious for wine:

1. Your most marked characteristic?

In wine, I like being (as they say in French) a horse that eats from all the troughs. There are styles of wine I like less (moelleux springs immediately to mind), but I like to test periodically my so-called wine prejudices. Sometimes there have been fabulous turnarounds. I've been seen proselytizing for chenin, of late!

2. The quality you most like in a man red wine?

I like ethereal red wines. I also like a certain rusticity. What I don't like is overbearing viscousness or jammy fruit. My gamut might span from Pineau d'Aunis to Cornas by way of Pinot Noir and cru Beaujolais. (And indeed, I am mixing up grapes and appellations. At least I don't say "varietal.")

3. The quality you most like in a woman white wine?

I like slightly oxidative whites. Like a woman showing her flesh. Or a barrel giving a sigh.

4. What do you most value in your friends?

I'm friends with those wines that take themselves seriously. Not in their outer trappings (unless we're talking high-quality corks)—heavy bottles, designer labels or consequential pricing. But wines that are not funny. They don't referment or reek, just as they don't float, aromatically, with the remnant particles of toasted wood chips. They are honest but honed.

5. What is your principle defect?

I break stemware.

6. What is your favorite occupation?

Two, where wine is concerned. One is obviously sitting at a table with good food and opening bottles with friends, enjoying them over the course of the evening. The other is visiting a vigneron, seeing where and how the wine is made, by whom, and tasting it there.

7. What is your dream of happiness?

A really fine Burgundy with the right amount of age. Or, at the opposite end of the spectrum, something I have never heard of before that turns out to be astounding. I could make my short dream list. I have friends with quirky taste.


Hm, I feel so serious! So sententious! This is the first third. Maybe the others I'll do more Dada in style. Stay tuned.

18 comments:

Scott Reiner said...

bravo!

guilhaume said...

nice work.

TWG said...

You're back,good warm up for Cory's blog

FREELANCER said...

oxidative whites are my favorite too. Good to go.

David McDuff said...

Funny, I hear all the Microsoft Certified software engineers like oxidative whites -- regardless of gender.

The Wine Mule said...

As a fundamentally unserious person, I can hardly require the wines I drink to be serious. But you've got me wondering...can a vinho verde be serious? If it were serious, would it be any good? I may fall asleep with quandariness over this one...

PS: If I were to have a Dream Of Happiness, it would probably include a Griottes-Chambertin, as you suggest, of an appropriate age.

Louisy said...

a good wine to me is also one i can open with friends, when there is nothing to worry about and there is plentiful cheese. Ideally we would be sitting outside, on a balcony on a warm summer evening.

Wine Selectors said...

I like red win. Good work. a good wine to me is also one i can open with friends, when there is nothing to worry about and there is plentiful cheese. Ideally we would be sitting outside, on a balcony on a warm summer evening.

Anonymous said...

Hi, Sharon. What is it that you don't like about the moelleux style???

croquecamille said...

I like my whites Burgundian and slightly savory. I like my reds round, bold, and comforting.

Oh. And I forgot one of my major food dislikes yesterday - caraway.

It was great to meet you!

TWG said...

The VLM restarted his blog what's your deal?

Sharon said...

I'm waiting on a guest post from Guilhaume....

Seriously, though, this is the kick in the pants I need. I promise to get something new up in the next couple of days.

the vinophile said...

ditto to breaking stemware..

Carl said...

Have to say that I admire anybody who can like Pineau d'Aunis, but rustic it certainly is...

russian women said...

Very much the helpful information. Thanks for such an informative article, it's been very useful.

top wine cooler said...

interesting thoughts. i agree with many of thoughts on what make a great wine.

y8 said...

The VLM restarted his blog what's your deal?

Shanta said...

What I think is utopia is sitting around with family and friends and opening up a few bottles of wine. Enjoying their company and sipping on our favorite wines after a long week of work.