Saturday, January 18, 2014

Overcomplexifying Wine

I decided to explore this word for one more day.

It seems that I have moved down the road in my enjoyment of wine into the realm of overcomplexifying. Yup, no longer is it enough for me to just like a wine.  

Gone are the good old days when I just considered whether I liked the wine or not. Now, whether I like it or not, I am pulling the wine apart and deciding why I like it or what could be improved in the wine to make me like it.

Is is balanced? Is there a complex flavor and aroma presentation? How does the wine feel? How are the tannins? The acidity? The minerality? What aromas are present? Currants or grapefruit or flowers or cherries or leather to whatever flavor you can imagine. I tasted a wine once where the winemaker described hints of bubblegum. 

And I look at how the wine appears in the glass. Is the color good--be it red or white. Does the color go with the kind of grape? 

I have overcomplexified wine drinking and enjoyment.

Even when someone asks what my favorite wine is I find myself unable to give a straight answer? Do you mean for drinking with cheese? Or sitting around the pool on a hot summer afternoon? Or enjoying with pizza, or hamburgers, or salmon, or a hunk of beef? Red or White? 

It used to be so simple--my favorite wine was an Australian shiraz.  But now it comes out something like a 2005 Axios Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve. I can't afford to drink it very often, but it is my favorite. On the other hand  depending upon the day, my favorite wine might be an Americana Vineyard Apparition, if I'm in the mood. 

Perhaps that is why life is all about. We take simple things and overcomplexify them, just to make ourselves feel better.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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