Among the objects I kept for a while – and for a while, I mean through several moves – were a small collection of wine bottles. What is small, you ask? In comparison to people who dispose of the wine bottle when it is empty, my collection may be considered sizeable. If you collect empty wine bottles throughout your home, my handful are hardly worth even mentioning. Yet, I want to mention them because I saved them for a reason, and even packed and unpacked them, so they must have held a modicum of significance. For example, I held on to the bottle from Germany for decades (see I Don’t Even Like Soccer from June 2021) because it reminded me of the luxury of living life in Europe for a spell.
As I have written more than once, wine should never be allowed to expire unopened (see Drink The Wine from April 2013). Admittedly, I may have taken this lesson to heart as I rarely let a bottle of vino stay in my fridge for more than a few days, much less find itself poured out as its flavor fades over time. No, no, wine celebrates life, whether festive toasts of bubbly to mark a wedding, or a slightly too-full glass to celebrate a work day ending. I laugh at my younger self when I felt grown up and casually ordered a glass of Zinfandel just because my ID confirmed that I legally could. I laugh at my older self that I think there are wines to go with each course: a cooking wine simply because I am preparing the evening meal, a dinner wine while I eat dinner, and a dessert wine to sip while I wash dishes.
Hand In Hand
Nothing pairs better with vacation than a fine wine, or really, any wine (see Antioxidants: Wine and Chocolate from September 2021). When I travelled from Florida to the Pacific Northwest, I chose to purchase a case to be delivered after I returned home as a reminder of my distant journey, and to extend the juices of my adventure even after my suitcase had long been unpacked. My selection, a Siegerrebe, did arrive and lingered in my home as a blissful reminder of my journey westward. With each bottle, the inevitable end to my adventure loomed, yet my palate enjoyed the white, wonderful wine until the last bottle ran dry. Consider it a certainty that I saved the bottle to remind me of both the vacation and the vinous joy it provided me.
I don’t recall tasting the variety when I lived in Germany, even though it originated near the Rhineland. I do know I have enjoyed its predecessor, Gewürztraminer, a few times in recent years. I wish I could remember that final flight I took – obviously before the modern era of travel – when I carried a half dozen bottles of wine in my carry-on bag upon leaving Deutschland, likely a vintage relative. Perhaps the fact that I have wine glasses from so many destinations (see Souvenirs from December 2011) explains my life as a oenophile, a nomad, and for a while, a hoarder. I may have let go of the empty bottle, but only as I search for the next memorable vintage, wherever that journey takes me.