Upon reading reviews of award-winning wines from a well-known Massachusetts vineyard
“Pale golden yellow color. Bright aromas of lemongrass, Kaffir lime leaf, lychee nut, and apricot yogurt with a silky dry-yet-fruity medium body and some pleasant maturing mineral and smoky notes backing the pure tart citrus fruit finish. Very Alsatian-like and a great choice for the table.”
Did the judges uncork a bottle of Pinot Gris or pour themselves a smoothie? I must be the taste equivalent of tone deaf. When I take my first sip of a glass of wine, I think, “Hmmm, it tastes pretty good,” or, “Geez, I don’t think this was a good choice.”
“Deep old gold color. Toasty brioche, baked fruit, and caramel aromas with a crisp, frothy medium body and a long grilled citrus, praline, and apple driven finish. Rich and satisfying; serve with grilled seafood.”
I’ve never tasted a wine that reminded me of toasty brioche, or toasty anything for that matter. I taste something vaguely grape-y, maybe dry, or sweet, or heavy, but "a long grilled citrus, apple driven finish?" Do they serve peyote mushrooms during these tasting events?
When I first started reading descriptions of wine, I actually thought the vintners dropped a few peaches or lemons or apricots into the vat while pressing the grapes. No, I was told, these were virtual flavors imagined by the judges and reviewers. Imagine what your wine would really taste like if Mr. Beringer threw his half eaten breakfast brioche into his fermenting Blanc de Blanc.
This is why I’m all in favor of the idea of selling wine in bottles with twist off caps or in plastic coated cartons, the kind you get your Hood homogenized 2% milk in. Even if it's a pretty good year for the wine, I dare one of those judges to start carrying on about “spicy caramelized apple and pineapple and coconut flan aromas” when they pour their wine from one of those babies.