Thursday, September 26, 2013


There are no members of our family that prefer white to red wine, but I am very fond of certain white wines. First, let me list a couple of wines which I consider only belong in blends: Semillon and (most examples of) Chenin Blanc. I find Pinot Grigio somewhat insipid, but it's "o.k." to my taste. I am especially fond of the Rieslings and other wines of Alsace-Lorraine, and I enjoy Viognier, which has come into greater prominence in recent years. In this limited review of my personal tastes, I enjoy Sauvignon (or Fume) Blanc, but my all-time favorite is the classic Chardonnay. There's a broad range of vinification of this grape, from the somewhat dry to the much-maligned "buttery" style. I like them all. There are many other types of white wine from the many wine-making parts of the world, of course. Then there are sparkling wines, which I'll discuss in another blog.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Sparkling Wine

This is the second of several blogs about my favorite wines by style--not individual vintners, let alone vintage years! Champagne, in my opinion, is still the ideal wine for toasting, whether for a simple birthday celebration or some other special reason for rejoicing. But champagne, even a humble non-vintage, is expensive There are many other quaffs suitable for celebrating. From Spain, I especially like Freixenet, but perhaps Cava is best known. In Germany, the simple word "Sekt" is what one asks for. Italy's Prosecco is spritsy. France also has many other sparkling wines, including a version of Vouvray.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


I love the color of rosé wines, but I accept the fact that they are not very popular - in fact, more rejected than accepted. Personally, I enjoy rosé wine as a summer quaff. Especially if it is a dry wine, not one of the sweet pink variety.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Our Song

In the early Fifties, one of my favorite movie cliches was when one of the characters in a romantic comedy would declaim "Listen, they're playing our song". An orchestra would then play a sentimental song., and the lovers would embrace. My fiancée (Helen) and I enjoyed most movies, but with all the cynicism of Oxford undergraduates anxious to be considered sophisticated, we liked to poke fun at Hollywood sentimentality. So when Helen said "We should have our own "Our Song", I immediately agreed. South Pacific was the hit musical of that time, so Helen readily accepted my suggestion that Some Enchanted Evening should be Our Song. I was never much of a dancer, but I well remember dancing cheek to cheek with Helen when the band played that smoochy song, giving us the chance to declare to each other "They're playing Our Song!". Helen & I had a formal betrothal party at her parents' home in Buenos Aires, but our lives took different directions, and we terminated the engagement "by mutual agreement", despite romantic trysts in Geneva, Paris, and Venice after that decision. We have each had two marriages to other people, and haven't been in touch for many years. But I still think happily of Helen whenever I hear "Our Song" being played.