Wine 101
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
Remember the friend who wanted me to do tourist-guide duties for her visiting cousins? Well, she called again the other day asking me to go to a wine-tasting function of a particular hotel.

Apparently, her cousins are crazy over fine dining and drinks. Since the only drinks she's familiar with are beer and brandy, she wanted me to go so I can familiarize her with the different kinds of wine and help her appear to be more "cultured and civilized". What the?!?!

"What made you think that I know something about wines?" I asked.

"Aren't you the wine connoisseur back in college?" she answered.

She's definitely not talking about me.

Seriously, I know nothing about wines. Well, not really nothing, but they're not enough for me to be called a "wine connoisseur." I know that red wine is paired with red meat, like beef, lamb, and horse meat. Wait, I think lamb meat is considered as white meat, together with pork, chicken, and fish, and they are best paired with white wine.

As far as I know, there are so many other kinds of wine, and if I'm asked to name any kind that I know in 60 seconds, I can only name two that I've heard of and not necessarily familiar with: merlot and chardonnay.

I understand merlot is some sort of a wine base, something you mix with other ingredients to create another kind of wine. And this I assumed when I overheard, about a couple of years ago, a foreign-looking man tell his friend over dinner that "Merlot-based wines have hints of currant and plum and berry." It pays to listen to other people's conversations sometimes. :)

On the other hand, I heard of chardonnay thanks to Alanis Morissette and her song "Ironic". When I first heard the line, "It's a black fly in your Chardonnay...", I asked my dad what a chardonnay is. He said it's a kind of grape used to make white wine. End of story.

So there. That's what I know about wines. Now you tell me if, in case you're in the shoes of my so-called friend, you'' bring me to a wine-tasting event to help you broaden your knowledge on wines. And hey, even if you think I know enough, I still have to clear with my OB what kind and how much wine I could drink, IF I am allowed to drink at all.

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