Thin Excuses

Chapter 26

A friend of ours lighted in Portland for the weekend a little while ago, and because my brain is no longer capable of operations that haven’t been thoroughly soaked in wine, it turned very quickly from “Oh hey, it will be nice to see Scout for a spell,” to “I wonder what wines I should pull?”[1].  One day last year she made the mistake of telling my girlfriend that she likes syrah, so ever since then, news of impending Scoutiness has set my mind aswirl with visions of Barossa or Cornas, Yakima or Paso Robles.[2] So the day before she arrived I geared up for the ritual fawning over the wines in my locker.[3]

As usually happens when I do this, I ended up with more than I intended; two syrahs, a pinot noir and a late harvest.  Why I thought three people would need four bottles for two days is beyond me,[4] but I like to show off.

As also usually happens when I do this, we didn’t drink it, because Lilly had to work all night, so Scout and I were left to chat and snack and not drink the Neyers 2006 Cuvee d’Honneur syrah that was hammering against the corner of my eye.  We went to dinner where Lilly was working, and visited with her on her way from one table to another, took in some live jazz, and I found a surprising glass of syrah from Snoqualmie that tode me over. Inky plum and blackberry mixed in with a little limestone and vanilla, and there was pomegranate on the finish, which was cool.

Once we got back to the apartment and settled in for good old fashioned TV to wait for Lilly to get home, I remembered I had a dessert wine, and that introducing my friends to dessert wines is one of my favorite things to do.  So we had the Sokol Blosser dessert Riesling, which was all about apple, peach and vanilla and a nice bright acid, which cut holes in our palates and poured the 20% residual sugar directly on our brains.  It was very nice, and it was even better after Lilly got home.

Curiously, the next day we tried it chilled, and the green apple aspect took over the wine, emphasized the acid and made it act much dryer, it was a neat contrast that was cool enough that I almost forgave myself for trying to trick people to go to a wine shop with me the next day to gaze at syrahs…[5]


[1] That’s almost a literal translation of my thought process.  Once upon a time I would have thought of what to cook, or where to go in town for the doing of cool things, but now I could think of little better than star shaped walking loops that happened to go near the various wine shops I like.

[2] Long before wine invaded my mind and my smoothest wine related move was the Chianti with the knight on the bottle, I received as a Christmas present a website my brother designed for my various photography.  (www.samwelchphotography.com) I named all my galleries after wines, and we all thought it was cool how each gallery took on a different personality, and I could recall all the photos by the wine gallery label.  I didn’t know at the time that I would eventually use this label system to organize my entire brain.  Scout is in Syrah, Canada in all it’s various glory is under the heading Icewine.  My parents are in Pinot Noir along with most of Oregon.  Maine, where I grew up, is also under Pinot Noir, because that’s where I send a lot of the stuff, it would be rude to put my home and spiritual cradle under Blueberry Wine, and I once smelled granite in a bottle of Phelps Creek pinot.

[3] “Mngyy Precioussssss….”

[4] The funniest part of my constant immersion in wine is that I don’t actually drink that much in terms of volume.

[5] I went by myself the next day.

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