Saturday, March 15, 2014

Aging disgracefully.

A story caught my eye in the 'On Wine' section of yesterday's Napa Valley Register, or rather two specific quotes in the story did.  The gist was...Leslie Rudd, owner of Press Restaurant in St. Helena (and Rudd Winery, Dean & DeLuca etc.), had invited 25 notable, pioneering Napa vintners to be wined and dined, and join him in the opening of his new cellar - said to contain the largest all Napa wine collection in the country - at the restaurant.  Guests included the likes of Paul Draper of Ridge Vineyards, Randy Dunn of Dunn Vineyards and Robin Lail of Lail Vineyards.  Rare wines were poured for the guests, including; a 1974 School House, Pinot noir and a 1977 Stony Hill, Chardonnay...I bet a good time was had by all.
During the dessert course a few vintners were asked to speak about wine and aging, and here are the aforementioned quotes.  Firstly, John Williams of Frog's Leap Winery compared wine to people claiming "if either starts out ugly, they're doomed to remain ugly."  Titter, titter.  And secondly, Warren Winiarski (he of '1976 Tasting of Paris' fame) waxed a bit more lyrical than Mr. Williams philosophising that "wine is not a living thing (as many espouse), but rather a dying thing, hopefully dying gracefully."  Snigger, snigger. 
I am going to add a third quote, more about people than wine, from my dearest mother who has been known to quip, "I don't plan on aging gracefully.  I plan to do it disgracefully."  The older I get, the more I am inclined to agree with her.  Chuckle, chuckle.


Dennis Tsiorbas said...

Vinogirl: "disgracefully"? Say it ain't so!
Well, judging from this lovely post, there's no evidence.
Two thoughts:
If something is dying it must be alive!
Though anecdotally true, an ugly baby often matures into Sophia Loren! As for wine, if it's made properly, it just might start-out badly (tannic for instance), and age well! However, I do get Mr. Williams' point!

Vinogirl said...

NHW: Laurel Thatcher Ulrich said, "Well-behaved women seldom make history." My mother should be famous :)
Yes, something must be alive to eventually die, but something can be very short lived. And there are a lot of ugly ducklings that never grow up to be swans.

Dennis Tsiorbas said...

Ha! You made me laugh! Really!