This title will be the epitaph on my tombstone; it’s a consistent theme in my life. Even to the point where, I hear myself say out loud ‘no, that’s not me. I don’t like that. I don’t want that.’ and in my mind, the little voice is mocking ‘ooh ooh ooh, you wait.’ I’ve even gotten into the habit of immediately telling anyone I date, ‘nothing I say or do is concrete.’ Why do I bring this up? -because I’ve started drinking wine. Yes. Wine. That alcoholic elixir which I’ve verbally abused and diminished vehemently, as if there was no deliberation in the matter. Here’s the truth, and I don’t say this to sound boastful, but it is the truth. I am a super-taster. This is also why my diet is so picky. It’s not because I want to be a health-freak asshole, it’s because I taste the dirt the root vegetable is grown in. I taste the pesticides clinging to the tiny hairs of a non-organic peach. I taste the astringency of radishes, the pepper of arugula.
I still hate raw tomatoes, even at their summer peak. My mom always told me our tastes buds change every 7 years. Where did she get this number, this fact? I’ve never looked it up to to authenticate or repudiate. Anyone? Ive tasted, tasted, tasted wines. Vinegar, acid, bread-y, wheat-y, and heavy on the tongue. I’ve compromised with light white Rieslings because they are sweet, because I cling to the bit of German ancestry I have in me. I can always ‘do’ sweet even though I don’t order dessert or bake anymore or have any desire for sugar truly. It’s that animal gene I think, the lingering desire. When I traveled to Budapest, i fell in love with the local Tokajî, another sweet white. A bottle was wrapped in many layers to travel home with me, then stood alone on a top shelf for months, neglected, undesired, associated with something and someone else. Even when it was opened for an anniversary, I couldn’t stomach it.
I mimed and mimicked my way through an estate sampling in Santa Ynez Valley, California, The Demetria Estate Yes, sticking to the whites. Uninspired, I returned to my summer choice of Bombay or Hendricks gin and soda with lime (tiny pinch of stevia if I’m making it at home. sweetens the soda water, minus the calories from tonic) Here and there, as I am a polite ‘when in Rome’ drinker, an occasional Rosé, an occasional French 75 (it’s the gin I like, not the champagne), yes.
But something switched. On a whim by his desire, a friend shared a Cabernet Sauvignon by Hess with me. And that was it. It will forever go down as the catalyst. The wine that changed the ‘never’ to ‘yes, just maybe’; the wine that broke the stream and the flood gates opened. It has been less that 3 weeks and I’ve tasted 7 more. Seven! I’ve maybe tasted 10 in my life!! Truth be told, I’ve now purchased my 5th bottle. 3 other reds, 2 whites. It’s like, I don’t want to turn my back on this and assume it isn’t for me. I will no longer assume wine gives me a headache because of sulfites, like an orthorexic avoids bread because of ‘gluten’. Assumption hurts us, closes us off. In the very least, it dulls our lives. That’s another post entirely.
But this now, this feels easy. Yes, to me it’s new and exciting and experimental. If I think about the options, it’s overwhelming. I won’t do that to myself because I know where I’m coming from, one whom ‘generally’ doesn’t like it. One of the 5 purchased, i gave away immediately. I felt like I was chewing on a piece of bread, truth be told.
To make this newfound endeavor easier to navigate, I’ve decided to first stick to low price point, because again, I may be handing it right off as soon as I open it, and I don’t want to waste money. Secondly, because the choices are narrowed down much more here, I’m sticking to organic, fair trade, and sulfite free. These are the only ones I’m buying till my taste buds really hone in on the components I most desire. I understand why people are so enthusiastic about it, and it’s not just the alcohol speaking. It’s like playing with a box of crayons and finding your favorite color, then learning this color comes in many variations.
To painting, to wine. Cheers!
Please suggest anything you think I should try.
P.S. I saw this super hot picture of a contributing writer in Food and Wine Magazine about 6 years ago and decided to contact him directly. We email-flirted for a solid week before he told me he was flaming gay! Damn ;( Lol.