Sunday, June 15, 2008

No Dark Sarcasm

Bobbing and weaving amongst the hordes of smooth talkers in the wine and spirits game are 158 who hold the title of Master Sommelier. Supposedly demonstrating an iron grasp of theory, service, and velvet-glove customer intimidation, the MS is the highest stateside distinction in the thick and disorganized pile of beverage education certificates.

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.

Today's damage:
  • 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.

4 comments:

Wonny said...

What does kirsh mean?

JBH said...

cherry liquor

jeremy said...

ya you're supposed to drink new castle by the pitcherload so it tastes better, a la harry's style. in related news: smitties mugs are now $1.75 (inflation!)

JBH said...

didn't smitty's also get rid of the porno trivia machine? gentrification...