The Deanster landed mid week. To celebrate we plied him with this really lovely, delicious Emilio Lustau East India Solera Sherry. The Deanster informed me it would last a long time once opened, and I suspected that might be a good thing as a long time might be Dean's tenure here. Good Call!
It was a good week with a few really nice intersections, and Dean got to talk about wine with people who know about wine. That would be pretty much anyone but me.
I'm still trying to figure out why the East India Sherry is from Spain.
Sherry aside, it's been since May that I've shared my deep love of wine I know nothing about, so let's catch up. Because the bottles piling up are starting to make me look a little zealous; I assure you, it's merely time passed.
This started the pile back in late May, and I'm old and I didn't take notes so here's what I know. I'd do it again in a heartbeat. It was really unusual and interesting and good. That's enough, isn't it?
The thing is, I finally organized my wine locker. Well, I rented out my locker - there was nothing left - so now I have a wine floor in the corner. Wine Without Borders. I researched open times and organized my spreadsheet by that. Now all I have to do is go down the list.
"Spreadsheet," like I have that much wine. About two and a half cases divided into the really nice stuff the very generous customers have donated to the cause and the plonk I buy. Obviously this is from Golden Pile A. It was ready to drink and I wanted to get some of the bigger reds in before it got too hot. Mission complete! It was big, huge, gigantic and delicious.
Then Dave said, "It's not THAT big."
I ...BIG...to differ.
This I opened because I could find little about it. Also from Golden Pile A, seriously interesting! And good!
I took notes!
"Black Cherry wrapped in two bay leaves."
That's different. I like it.
Justin gave this to me and I was making salad one night. The bottle was on the counter and I was crumbling feta into the salad. I remembered that thing about how Champagne pairs best with salty foods, so I popped some feta and took a swig of this stuff, and really it just came ALIVE. I rarely drink wine with food, because the wine I like and the food I eat don't really go together. But WOW, how well everything works when it does.
This stuff was as unusual as it was different. The first day or two, I wasn't convinced. Very dry, stiff. Then I left it for the weekend, cellar temperature and not at all tightly capped. While I was gone it just...settled into itself. It got delicate and floral notes showed up.
When The Deanster was here, we talked a lot about wine in how it has a different purpose for everyone. What you realize when listening to these guys is how much they know, all the little details about the growers, the vines, the weather that year, the pedigree of the wine maker, the history of hands touching the grapes, the mood of the bottler, the species of crickets in the vineyards, the elevation of each individual grape. It's devotion to this beautiful, live, ever evolving liquid in a bottle. And being privy to such conversations is really one of my favorite things about being here, even if I myself will never progress beyond, "That was really good."