Wine, as many oenophiles know, was the beverage of choice at the Greek Symposia (for men only) and Roman Convivia (for women only), wherein topics of political and philosophical importance were discussed and debated throughout the night and into the morning hours while eating finger food and sipping wine. However, unlike the fully torqued alcoholic beverages of the Germanic tribes, the Greeks (primarily) and the Romans (less so) watered-down their wines so as to keep the intellect open and in check during those festivities. There are indications that the intellect was occasionally overtaken by topics and actions of a more corporeal nature.
Each varietal is unique, and each reveals itself via its particular qualities of tannin, acidity, alcohol, body and dryness. That’s why, for example, Pinot Grigio tastes totally unlike, say, Sauvignon Blanc, and neither is remotely similar to Semillon or Viognier. And in the hands of a competent winemaker one can expect, with some exceptions, each of those wines to always smell and taste the way they do, glass after glass, time after time. This varietal truth and consistency makes the study and pursuit of wine appreciation not only possible, but also quite engaging. (For a variety of reasons, wines at the very low price and quality level usually fail in that respect.)
There is also a truth of a wine’s provenance (think appellation) , where, for example, in Spain’s Rias Baixas region, the world’s quintessential version of Albariño is produced. Since it rocketed on to the wine scene many years ago, Albariño is now being produced elsewhere, but the truth of its origins, and the unique way an Albariño smells and tastes in its birthplace is what separates it from its hopeful, but , nevertheless, somewhat lesser interpretation in other countries. They are good, but not like the real thing.
The same can be said of the wines from other appellation and the wines that are produced therein. Consider, for example, the unique profiles of the wines of France’s Cote Rotie, Italy’s Brunello and Greece’s Agiorghitiko (aka St. George). Nobody makes them like they do and better than they do. And that’s the truth!