Napa Valley is alive and well.

Napa Valley is alive and well.

Friday, October 19, 2012

My many affairs with wine.


This is not going to be easy, but it’s time to come clean. I have a confession to make—I have not been true to my first love. I have been unfaithful and deeply regret that I have strayed. But I hope by owning up, telling all and setting the record straight, that you will understand how it all came about and thereby avoid a similar indiscretion of your own.

For years, under the rationalization of needing variety in my life, I was more often than not in the clandestine company of others.

Shamelessly, I got caught up in random rendezvous with voluptuous, dark-skinned beauties from Spain as well as secret candlelight dinners with svelte, light-skinned Alsatian charmers.

I was involved in romantic trysts with full bodied, earthy types from Tuscany, as well as spontaneous, alfresco lunches with well-structured, elegant ones from Germany and Austria.

And not that those dalliances are the complete account of my indiscretions. I was also drawn to the enjoy-me-now, forward offerings of youthful Chileans and Australians.

The fresh and vibrant air of New Zealand and South African samplings also offered some exciting New World experiences that were simply too tempting to resist.

Further, I had jetted to Provence and other Mediterranean locales, where many Old World head-turners were born and raised, where they openly revealed the best of their underlying charms, not only on the beaches of the Italian and French Rivieras, but also in the dark and intimate corners of countryside bistros and trattorias.

It was exciting and stimulating. I was addicted to the thrill of the pursuit, but I now understand how self-indulgent that quest was. I’ve realized those encounters were simple and temporary and that they lacked the complexity and depth needed for a meaningful connection. And so, I’m returning to the one that first turned my head. The one that first seized my attention, stirred my imagination, the one that . . . .

When a friend first described her, I needed to know all about her. I scoured newspaper and magazine articles, and poured over books that revealed the intimate details of her life; her personality and character, and the traits of her extended family as well. I discussed her with friends, acquaintances and confidants alike, and eventually, I came to understand what she was all about.

When the moment came for our first meeting, she was initially shy and reserved, later somewhat more approachable, but with time she eventually revealed her hallmark qualities of complexity, finesse and elegance, those character traits that others struggle to emulate, but frequently fall short of achieving. It was not as I imagined. It was better.

Recentyly, my wife and I enjoyed our last bottle of a lovely 1985 Chateau Canon (St. Emilion) with dinner, and it reminded me, ever so sweetly, why I originally got enthused about wine. And it affirmed—for me at least—that sometimes wine can be more than just a beverage, and why sometimes it can bring life a few special moments. Such an occasion doesn’t always occur, but when it does . . . .




























No comments:

Post a Comment