Thursday, November 3, 2011

Wine is (just) fine

As someone who really enjoys drinking wine, but (you may want to sit down for this, East Coasters) isn't sure he could distinguish between a chardonnay and a merlot without a label to cheat off of, this article gave me a little shiver of joy:
If hints of cassis, subtle earthiness, and jammy notes don’t interest you, you are not a lesser person. Wine is not art. There’s no reason to believe that aligning your tastes with those of a self-appointed elite will enrich your life, or make you more insightful or sensitive. If wine critics want to spend lavishly on the wine they like, that’s great. Leave them to their fun. Be grateful that you can gain just as much pleasure, if not more, without bankrupting yourself.
"Wine is not art" is pretty close to outright blasphemy among a good number of my friends and acquaintances, but thank god someone finally said it. Look, I'm glad you all can enjoy nice things. But there are plenty of nice things that aren't wine. I don't believe there's anything that makes wine drinking inherently more artful than beer drinking, or cooking, or any other number of other perfectly-enjoyable-but-decidedly-middlebrow aesthetic pursuits. There is something that sets wine appreciation apart from the rest, though -- its considerable cultural cachet as a Snobby Hobby for the Upper Crust. And I think that reputation goes a lot further towards explaining wine's role in our society and its prominence in so many people's lives than anything about the stuff itself.

No comments:

Post a Comment