Tomorrow I'm gonna get mines--not an MS, but an acceptable clink of the glass for 24 Tuesday mornings spent getting semi-drunk, taking patchy notes, and somehow absorbing at least 65% of what there is to know about every major wine-producing region in the world. Passing is a foregone conclusion, though admittedly I had hoped to be throwing a no-hitter at this point. As it stands, the minutiae of Germany, Southern Italy, and Tokaji may have gotten the better of me for now.
This is just the beginning, though; a first step in the struggle for mastery. One day I'd like to have an MS, MW, or whatever else proves I can float like a buttery chardonnay and sting like a beerenauslese.
- Newcastle Brown Ale - Body is closer to medium than suggested by the deep copper color and British Bulldog logo. Coffee and faint stone fruit fill out the palate but quit in a disappointingly thin finish.
- Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Chardonnay 2005 - A self-conscious attempt not to be an overwrought California white is a moderate success. Crisp, rustic acidity pairs well with cheese and hors d'oeuvres but I was hoping for a little more toast and fruit. Here's to the old master.
- Atalayas de Golban Ribiera del Duero 2004 - Kirsch and plums get it on with spicy vanilla in a round, balanced, and delicious Duero.
- Glenmorangie Nectar D'Or Single Malt Scotch (Sauternes cask) - Doesn't taste like Sauternes, but I guess I was an idiot for expecting it would. Not alcoholic-smelling. Very elegant, especially on the honeyed finish.