Thursday, February 10, 2011


When people have asked me over the course of the past mumblemumble many weeks why I've been away from my blog, I've responded, "Oh, I haven't been away. I've been lurking."

I kid, but it is clear that I do need to feel the firm grip of vinous passion wrap itself around my, say, upper arms, straighten me in my chair, and put both of my hands on the keyboard, index fingers on F and J.

Tap, tap, tap—but where to start?

A wine post is a snapshot, a burst of light and words. Wine itself is a crystal ball.

The last glass of 08 L'Anglore Sels d'Argent is a snowglobe of... what?

If I can look through the specks into the depth of its gold, what do I see? Actually, it is a good marker, for me, of two things. I discovered this wine last summer and have since come back to it with enjoyment, enjoyment, enjoyment, and delight (and maybe a couple more enjoyments and a delight or two).

For me, it marks both the discovering of new wines and the low-level thrill of tasting the variations of a single pleasure. (On that note: there is nothing wrong with drinking Prévost's La Closerie early and often, or vice versa.)

Let's take it a shade darker.

Some of the most compelling wines I have had in the past months have been uncompromising, heavy wines. Wines that are hard to follow up with another, "meditation" wines. I should suspect myself for that. But how can you not go limp with a glass of 2001 Radikon Oslavje, all deep spice and wonder, in your hand? You can't not. You'd have to be an ascete.

1999 Ganevat Vignes de Mon Père spent 130 months in its topped-up barrel and left me, one night a couple of weeks ago, sitting on top of the butte Montmartre as though I were on the highest spot on earth. You could smell it from the decanter across the table.

But just as music that is all clash and bombast gets tiring, we need a little flutey lightness to get a kind of contrapuntal vibe going.

It was not felicitous to follow god's own Ganevat, that night, with a frilly little carbonic grolleau. But I will admit It was a nice evening out, a week later, the night I wended my way over to a wine bar in a sooty part of the 9th arrondissement with some contraband chicken liver pâté I had made at home to share a bottle of 09 Landron Muscadet Amphibolite with a friend.

My dabbles with the Melon grape have been middling to poor, but I won't give up. A current thrill is the 09 Domaine de Cadette Melon, from that variety's native land, Burgundy. I don't love it (only) for its woodcut or for the memories of Vézelay that spring in my head when a bottle gets near (or for that matter, for a happy memory of an insufficiently air conditioned hotel in Avignon where a cool bottle of Cadette Melon was a chill and a breeze and a delight)—I love it because it's deceptively simple. Something you can drink down, but then step back and nod with that pursed-lip look of being impressed. And the lime curd thing, too.

These three aspects of wines have me thinking and typing again.


the vlm said...

I've been lurking here.


Sharon said...

Thanks mucho, VLM. High-quality lurking going on...


The Wine Mule said...

Everyone needs more lime curd in their lives. Please keep typing!

SJP said...

What the L? lurking, light, limpidity....lime?
Lovely, luscious and lithe.

sewa mobil said...

Nice article, thanks for the information.

Mike Grammer said...

lovely---the quest for Muscadet and melon de bourgogne wines is the worthy quest, Sharon.

Unrelated but important (grin), I'm coming to Paris for a visit in mid-May---possible to get together/OL etc.? If so, PM me on the Wine-Pages board. Thanks and I will keep checking in here.

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