Friday, August 10, 2007

A Shamelessly "Borrowed" Story

Yesterday I rode around with the National Sales Manager from Cougar Crest Winery. Only on their third vintage, these guys are phenomenal. The wines are complex and varietally correct, each displaying the perfect balance between fruit and acidity. They are truly a great example of what Washington State can do, and I am proud to be able to sell their products.

And as an added bonus the sales manager was a trip. He kept me in stitches all day, and well into the evening, with tons of stories, including this one, which I will now completely rip off.

(Picture this story being told by a short Italian guy, whose personality is larger than life, in a fun, not obnoxious, way. New York accent and all.)

"Oh, dude, so, my wife and I went home to my mom's house for Christmas for the first time last year. My mom doesn't drink cause she gets migraines. I mean, the woman can't even fuckin' have a red wine reduction, I swear, it's terrible. But she lives with my aunt, and they have a few bottles around the house that they have somehow accumulated over the years.

'Brian, go down to the basement and get that bottle on the left end of the shelf,' she told me when we were there. 'It's something I've been wanting to share with you for a while. I bought it when I graduated college.'

Great, I thought. Something she bought like 40 years ago and has never told me about until now. This should be interesting.

So I creak down the stairs and find the bottle she's talking about. It's covered in cobwebs, so I pick it up and blow it off. Poufffff....

My wife, who's like, a total Bordeaux freak, by the way, could hear me gasp all the way up the stairs.

'What is it?' she called down.

So I'm cradlin' the bottle like a baby, afraid to do anything to damage, or even alter the wine in any way, and go back upstairs.

'Um, it's a '68 Lafite.'

'Oh... my... God...' she muttered slowly.

'Is that a good thing?" my aunt cackled.

'Oh, we're fuckin' drinkin' this thing tonight,' I say. Dude, I don't even care that '68 was supposedly a bad vintage.

So I go to open the thing, and the cork completely dissolves and I have to push it down into the bottle. So I'm fuckin' filtering it through a coffee filter and decanting it into a water pitcher. But we're like, determined to drink it, even if it's totally gone.

So, I lift the first taste to my mouth, and my whole body, like falls, and I shake my head to my wife. I mean, this wine... it's not completely dead, but it's like livin' at the nursing home, fuckin' IVs in it's arm, saying it's goodbyes to its grand kids... it's on the way out.

And then, I swear to God, my wife's nose perks up from across the room and she's like 'Give me that wine.' Dude, the thing had been open and exposed to the air for like two minutes, and it completely turned around. It's like it drank out of the fountain of youth, jumped out of it's wheelchair, and started tap dancin'. It was awesome.

So we drank the whole thing out of her old ass crystal glasses and had it with the meatloaf she fixed for dinner.

And I'll tell you this - it wasn't the best fuckin' wine I've ever had, but it sure was the most memorable."


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