May 1, 2008

Through a (Clear) Glass, Darkly

Breathable%20Glass%20comparison.JPGWe humans are delusional; we think we have free will and immaculate perception. We don't rob Peter to pay Paul, we borrow from our friends so we can buy oil from our enemies. We turn our food supplies into even more fuel, and we'd grow yet more if only we could afford to import still more fertilizer from our neighbor to the north, even as we build a fence to keep out our neighbors from the south.

In this climate of public mistrust, we are encouraged to rely instead on the personal and private: our own sense of taste. Especially when it comes to wine, that most variable of beverages, we're told to "drink what you like." In this bottle, in that glass, we seek salvation.

Salvation from bad wine? No, improvement of good wine, but subito, vite, schnell, quickly! Can't wait for the subtle ravages of time to smooth tannins and ameliorate acids, gotta getta gimmick and, presto! The wine doesn't breathe, the glass breathes. So say wine gurus Robert Parker and Ronn Wiegand. Sez Cornichon, not so much.

We tried this new Breathable Crystal stemware with a second-tier Bordeaux, a Beaujolais and a Chinon, all decent wines that showed promise of improvement with time. Yes, tannins were tamed, but the wines seemed to lose their balance. In growing up so fast (two or three years in two or three minutes), they lost their youthful intensity.

We see the future with no more clarity than any mortal; but through this glass, our conclusion is "don't grow up too fast." Live within your means, live within your time.

Posted by Ronald Holden at May 1, 2008 11:54 AM | TrackBack

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