White light at the end of the tunnel – a tunnel surrounded by magnums of aged wine – must be what Dante was talking about in Paradiso.
|Even as he who squints and strains to see
the sun somewhat eclipsed and, as he tries
to see, becomes sightless, just so did I
in my attempt to watch the latest flame, (Par. XXV, 118-121)
St. John’s appearance in his clothing of light is so brilliant that Dante “becomes sightless.” The comparison of St. John to a “sun somewhat eclipsed” may refer to his wisdom, extending far beyond that of the souls located in the sun.
I guess what I’m trying to say is “that cellar sure is pretty”.
Good news everyone! It’s 2012 and my wine cellar just aged a year. That means that every wine in my cellar sounds more impressive than it did yesterday. My 2005 Rioja collection has a more mature feel about it now that it’s 7 years old. And the great thing is that every single wine aged overnight. In the words of Ricky Bobby, “Does that blow your mind? That just happened”.
I celebrated with an ironically non-vintage Piper Sonoma from America. Check your cellar – I’m sure the same thing just happened to you.
Why not ask for a wine cellar this Christmas? I have a modest wine cellar in the basement cold room and I love it – maybe even obsess over it a little. It’s sad to think that many of my friends don’t have a wine cellar this Christmas – too sad to think about sometimes. Now is the time to start a cellar.
There are no rules to starting a cellar. Just ask yourself, “What do I like to drink?” I have almost half my cellar in Spanish wines - my brother does live there – and a quarter of my cellar in Australian Shiraz. That’s not really very balanced but it’s what I like to drink.
Now that I said there are no rules – here are the rules.
Rule 1 – If you don’t have French wine and Italian wine in your cellar then I think it best that you refer to it as “some bottles in my basement” because without these Old World classics your cellar is just a wannabe.
Rule 2 – It’s a good idea to replace a couple of obligatory bottles of Champagne – and you are obliged – with Cava from Spain and then spend the extra money on a Barolo, or a Chateauneuf du Pape. Could somebody remind me why the Pope needed a second home? I’ll bet it was to because he got tired of drinking Chianti all the time and wanted some of the good French stuff.
Rule 3 – Even if you don’t usually drink white wine you really should have something white and French in your cellar – and I don’t mean a mime. I would have a couple of Chablis on hand and pay the extra money for a Premier Cru.
Rule 4 – I guess this really should be a warning. Once you start a cellar it is likely to grow in size. My friends Rob’s cellar of 500 bottles gives me cellar envy, except when I get a bottle from him as a gift. Maybe rule 4 should be that it is a good idea to have friends with higher level of wine commitment than you have. It makes for great drinking.
Rule 5 – If you need to convince someone else in your house that starting a cellar is a good idea then consider using the term “investment” frequently in the conversation - just don’t let the conversation steer in the direction of the actual meaning of that word. Don’t let the facts get in the way of a strong argument.