In light of Friday’s completely retarded shooting in Connecticut, we all could use some cheer so I’m releasing this one a little early…
What’s your wine IQ? No, I’m not talking about how many obscure grapes you thought you drank just so you could lie your way into some “century” wine elitist club. I’m also not talking about how much cash you spend to get that highly-allocated bottle of barnyard buzz. Just cuz you’re rich doesn’t mean you know wine. If someone asks you, “What’s Washington’s best cabernet?” and you answer, “Quilceda Creek,” my friend, you don’t know Washington wine. Some old-fogey newsletter from out-of-state told you that and you bought it. We have a term for these status-conscious knucklenuts. It’s called ‘lemmings.’ In a dining situation, they’re also known as smelliers. Avoid these flaming hemorrhoids at all costs as they are a danger to both your wallet and your intellect.
Now, as you are drinking your wine while reading this (and hopefully not in the morning!), I have recorded some great tidbits of advice over the course of the year while guzzling through some 60 reviewable wines and sipping some 600 others. I know… I’m slowing down, but who else you gonna drink with???
(Januik merlot) -Hello! I’m a bottle of wine and I’m here to make your problems go away.
(Bota Box zinfandel) -Sharing boxed wine with a blind date– because you’re ugly and I’m horny.
(Washington Hills gewurz) -I’m not really a social drinker… I’d say most of my drinking is work-related.
(Black Barrel syrah) -The secret to enjoying a good wine is (1) open the bottle and allow it to breathe, then (2) if it does not look like it’s breathing, then give it mouth-to-mouth.
(Adams Bench ‘Myth’) -I just read the dangers of drinking wine… scared the shit outta me. So that’s it! After today, no more reading.
(Covington Cellars sangiovese) -Washington wine… because no good story begins with “that one time I ate a salad.”
(Bodega Elena red) -Childhood is like being drunk… everyone remembers what you did except you.
(Cavatappi sangiovese) -If you resolve to give up smoking, drinking, and loving, you don’t actually live longer. It just seems longer.
(Northwest Wine Academy red) -I use drinking as an anesthetic and a balm. Nothing seems unbearable after the first few glasses of Washington wine, except not having another.
(Avennia syrah) -I feel sorry for people who don’t drink Washington wine. They wake up in the morning and that’s the best they are going to feel all day.
(Costco merlot) -Words of the day: Washington wine–a magical liquid that makes boring things fun and ugly people attractive.
(Southard riesling) -Nothing says “I mean business” like using a cart at Wine World.
(YakYak Wine riesling) -You know something bad is about to happen when someone says “Hold my wineglass and watch this.”
(Olsen Estates g.b. riesling) -I’m going to make a wine called Mondays so you can get a case of the Mondays.
(Syncline rose) -I’m going to make a wine and name it ‘Responsibly’ so all those other ads will promote my brand via “Drink Responsibly.”
(Amelia Bleu barbera) -I’m going to make a wine called BDSM. Barbera, Dolcetto, Syrah, Merlot. What the hell were you thinking???
(Guardian Cellars ‘Chalk Line’) -A fine wine may be judged with one sip… but it’s better to be thoroughly sure.
(Milbrandt riesling) -Finish your wine! There’s sober kids in India.
(Kamari cab franc) -Warning: drinking Washington wines before pregnancy can cause pregnancy.
(Furion Cellars sangiovese) -Sometimes when I reflect back on all the wine I drank, I feel ashamed. Then, I look into my glass and think about all the workers in the winery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this wine, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, “It is better to drink this wine and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver.”
(Glaze Wines cabernet) -I don’t always drink Washington wines, but when I do, I prefer to drink a lot of it. Stay drunk, my friends!
(finishing an afternoon of poly-winery tasting with Open Road Wine Co. viognier at Wine Cellars of Washington) -What your drink says about you… Mead wines: “Wait, is mead wine really a wine?” Highly rated wines (read: heavily oaked wines): “Honestly, these all taste like wood and I can’t tell the difference between them.” Obscure varietals: “I think I’m interesting.” Chateau Ste. Michelle Columbia Valley wines: “I’m boring.” CSmith wines: “I’m hungover.” Bottled water: “I’m taking one for the team by driving tonight.” Tap water: “I’m only here because I’m f*cking driving tonight.”
(Edna Valley chardonnay) -Wine Mathematics: Everclear + California wine = ruins your kidneys, biker chicks + California wine = ruins your blood test, hot blonds + California wine = ruins your brain, one night stands + California wine = ruins your heart. That damn California wine… it ruins everything.
(Copper River Estate merlot) -Alcohol is not the problem… technically, it’s a solution!
(Copper River Estate merlot) -Alcohol is not the answer. It just makes you forget the question.
(Corfini sangiovese) -Q: What goes good with a $140 syrah with an alcohol of 15%? A: Teenage girls with low self esteem and questionable morals.
(Kaella sangiovese) -I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence or insanity to anyone, but they’ve always worked for me.
(Hollywood Hills pinot noir) -You’re not drunk if you can lie on the floor without holding on.
(Novelty Hill grenache) -I don’t drink these days. I am allergic to alcohol and narcotics. I break out in handcuffs.
(L’Ecole No 41 syrah) -I got so drunk last night, I think I thought a tube of toothpaste was astronaut food.
(Snoqualmie ‘Naked’ riesling) -Weekend forecast: mostly drunk with a chance of horny.
(Salida tempranillo) -me: Dude, I was not that drunk. Co-worker: You picked up a little Mexican girl and screamed, “Dora! I need your map to get home.”
(Adams Bench sangiovese) -Things that are difficult to say when you are drunk: indubitably, innovative, preliminary, proliferation, cinnamon. Things that are very difficult to say when you’re drunk: specificity, British Constitution, passive-aggressive disorder, loquacious, transubstantiate. Things that are downright impossible to say when you’re drunk: 1) Thanks, but I don’t want to have sex; 2) Nope. No more booze for me; 3) Sorry but you’re not really my type; 4) Good evening officer. Isn’t it lovely out tonight? 5) Oh, I just couldn’t. No one wants to hear me sing; 6) Sorry I’m being such a jackass.
To the wine…
Tasted at 55-64 degrees on the IR temp gun. Calligraphy ink with deep garnet rims in the Riedel, this flagship cabernet covers the dinner table with dry ice-like flowing aromas of purple flowers, blackberry, hi-toned wildflowers, Sri Lankan spice cabinet, and black violets. Full-bodied with extended residence on the palate showing deeply complex notes of blackberries, blueberries, violet berry, violet pie, black licorice, espresso grounds, black pepper, cedar plank, cherry tart, cinnamon toast, and a floor of sweet tannins with some drying. Recommended pairings: beef, game, hot busty Italian.
Alcohol: 15%. Columbia Valley AVA. 79% cabernet sauvignon, 14% merlot, and 7% cabernet franc. Power: 3/5. Balance: 3/5. Depth: 3/5. Finesse: 4/5. Rated: 93. Retail: $49. Sample bottle. Music pairing: “Thunder and Lightning” by Chi Coltrane. This is WAwineman… uncorked, uneducated but not uncouth.