The Drop with Olivia Evans – the art of wine consumption
“Give me a bowl of wine, in this I bury all unkindness” – William Shakespeare.
It is a prickly undertaking to be human, one that is invigorated by means of stepping out of our current state. It’s the reason for music and art, nature and physical movement, bringing joy to our otherwise frenetic minds. Where wine finds its place is as an artform that one can consume. It is open to interpretation (though not for its efficiency of intoxication, that is certain) and yet it provides a myriad of philosophies that can make life rather beautiful.
The journey begins in the sourcing of the wine. To spend an afternoon collecting wine in a worthy bottle shop is like moseying through the halls of a good gallery – labels to read, artwork to admire with the added advantage of having multiple souvenirs to take home. Note the word multiple. It is always advisable to purchase more wines than you need. For any given occasion it is best to leave the house with a bottle of something you have longed to drink.
Travelling to wine regions is a slower and more privileged approach. The environmental perfection that permits the growth of grapes in the ideal temperature, on suitable soils and facing at just the right angle towards the sun, also happen to be the most beautiful landscapes in the world. There is a reason why we love wine regions and it isn’t just because of the wine. It’s cause to appreciate nature and connect with people whose motive for living is dictated by the seasons. We drink with more appreciation in a wine region – like being a guest at someone else’s table – each sip is a polite nod to the bucket load of hard work.
The next consideration is quantity – and let this be a reminder of the miseries we have all felt after one too many. Wine will always have the upper hand when we believe we can revel as we please. The art to understanding quantity is to first consider quality. Given the opportunity to consume one greater, more interesting or wonderfully made wine over three less superior wines, I’d take the former every time.
Defining superiority comes down to personal opinion so at the very least consider these ethics as you would your food, fashion and personal products. How was the fruit farmed? What kind of chemicals am I ingesting? Is this a family business or am I contributing to a large corporation? The price of well-made wines is a reflection of the true cost of making a wine well. No shortcuts, a lot of pride and always with respect.
Lastly there’s company, which in its truth is the utmost essential aspect to consider when wishing to experience wine. In fact, an old friend, a new friend or several seats at the table will provide you with everything you need, wine is just the seasoning that brings it all together. Appreciating art can be encountered in solitude but is always heightened when shared with others. At its core, it was made for bringing people together.
Be that as it may, there is something to say about softening the residual fatigue left after each day by a ritual known simply as pouring yourself a glass of wine. Drink beautifully!
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