The group was slow to start as they sat idly awaiting instruction. Spirits were low as they looked to their blue-temperatured screens or blank notepads as an artist would awaiting a shipment of colored oils. It was time to make my move and open the wines that two others and myself had brought. It was far too sad a site to endure any longer.
The knife slid through the bread I had made for the evening, followed along with slicing of the cheese (a long-time-coming revisit of Dubliner cheddar). Turning around I found myself trapped by a sneaky, well-built character who was looking for the same relief I was but was afraid to make the first move. He eyed me removing the corks from all three wines as he attempted a stilted chit-chat about how are writing was really going, indicating that he had not made the move for the wines before because he had never before opened a bottle. He asked who the chick was who made the bread. A patronizing grin blossomed on his lips when I had told him I baked it. We somehow ended our short conversation with the best cooking method of whole garlic; and his smirked remained, so I left promptly, making sure to fill his hand with a cup of wine and a slice of bread to better distract him from following me.
The instructor suckled and bit upon his usual cigar as he held a script up high. He was mocking the use of semi-colons again, of which was a favorite pass time of his. Yes it was my script (yes, everyone knew it), and yes, I could not longer pay attention until the rant was over. The Harlow Ridge, the wine of my choosing for the evening, sloshed down my throat quite easily.
Harlow Ridge 2009, Lodi California Cabernet Sauvignon – $10
– A medium hued red with a fair mix of healthy cabernet-brown.
– Oak was most prevalent. Some leafy and gravel redolence.
– Cranberry in the front, an austere sweet in the mid followed by a finale of olive, grass and cinnamon.
Overall: Worthy. Cabernets are known to be sturdy, a real safe bet. This is a cheap, very resilient wine that will hold up to any dinner or cool evening. I would buy this again… even for the sole intend of a dedicated wine night.
Looking up, one wiry haired grandfather-to-someone looked shocked as his script was mauled to bits with disapproving resentment over its lack of appropriate comma use. He seemed to be abstaining himself from the comfort of the snack table. I saw to it that I would sample all the more in his stead.
Raven’s wood 2008, Merlot – $12
– Very dark purple with no other discernible shadings.
– Hardly a trace of smell. Most fascinating. Dust? I fancy this shy wine already.
– Not shy at all. It’s a spicy and sweet concoction of oak zeal and lemon bitterness.
Overall: Skip. The sweet element overwhelms whatever there could be left to discover. It’s a little thin and puerile.
The instructor looked violently through his notes and gave up with a garrulous string of grumbling curses, and finally rubbed his eyes vigorously in thought.
“The unexamined life is a life not worth living,” he finally sputtered out. “Aristotle said it.”
“Socrates,” I corrected with a tip of my glass.
He simply stared. Suddenly the skin I was in felt a little tightened and my throat seemed to be clogged. Time for another drink. Just how much are personal resentments reflected when taking into account their work? The thought sent me shrinking. To the table!
Starmont 2009, Chardonnay – $8
– lemon-tinged clear.
– Smelled of wood that was defecated on… a hint of petrol disturbance.
– Let’s put it nicely: It was like mixing a diluted sprite with a slab of young mango that was tumbled with a half-package of jello… the raspberry variety.
Overall: Skip it. See it, then dismiss it quickly.