I like wine tastings. Makes me feel classy while I binge drink. It’s also a great place to pick up some fancy wine talk. Fancy wine talk is super useful, don’t roll your eyes at it. If you like to get a little toasty at swanky events, fancy wine talk is an excellent way to detour people you want to impress from your advanced state of drunkenness. I’ve often unexpectedly run into someone of great importance at a party half shit-canned and been able to distract them from my slurred state with an insightful quip about tannins. A quip I probably picked up from some connoisseur pouring me a splash of Petite Syrah at a tasting. Classic.
Unfortunately all this ingestion of fancy talk has lead me, on occasion, to believe I actually know what I’m talking about. Like when you tell a lie long enough you begin to believe it? That’s me with wine knowledge.
So, at a recent wine tasting, I stumbled upon an old favorite vino of mine that to my “knowledge” had recently gone to shit. I approached their booth well sauced and decided I should tell them this. They needed to know and would appreciate my candor…especially since I knew so many fancy things about wine.
“OH MY GOD! Y’ALL! I used to LOVE your Sauvignon Blanc.”
“Thank you! That’s great to hear!”
“USED to. It USED to be my favorite, but I don’t know what happened in the past couple of years it’s kind of gone down hill. What’s up?”
“We have a new winemaker and–”
“Yipes! Well no bueno, new guy. Am I right?!”
“–and this is him. He might be able to answer some of your questions.”
The guy on the right signaled to the guy on the left. His smile stayed intact, but his eyes went from kind to killer.
“Hi, I’m Stephen: The Winemaker.”
“I am so sorry. Seriously. I have a terrible pallet. I don’t know what I’m talking about.”
“No no. It’s fine. I’m sure you have a great pallet.”
“I don’t. I was probably smoking or something last time I tried it. I used to smoke. Disgusting habit. Who does that? ME! I’m disgusting.”
“Honestly, you’re making it worse. Don’t worry about it.”
About that time Meatballs rolled up.
“MEATBALLS! This is my boyfriend, Meatballs. He has an amazing pallet. Give him a taste.”
They poured him a taste and I scream whispered to him to tell them how amazing it was even if it tasted like shit. He didn’t skip a beat.
“It’s really nice, guys. Honestly, crisp. Good finish.”
“See!” I screamed. “It’s just ME!”
“We know you told him to say that. We could hear you whispering.”
“Y’all are funny. This is funny.”
Meatballs grabbed my hand and politely lead me away.
“Now what did you do?” He asked. Usually I get defensive when people assume things are my fault, but this time I couldn’t even feign shock. It was all me.
“I insulted the wine to the winemaker’s face BEFORE I knew he was the winemaker, obviously.”
“Obviously. Well don’t worry about it, you’ll probably never see him again.”
It was then I noticed Meatballs was palming a very nice bottle of red.
“Did you just buy that?” I asked.
“No! Actually the guy who makes it recognized me from college. We had a good chat so he gave me a bottle.”
“Man alive, you’re sexy when you score free booze.”
“Thank you, darling.”
“I just feel lacking now, like I need to score free booze too. Bring something to the table.”
“Go for it. Bring home the bacon for daddy!”
“I just like talking white trash to you about money.”
“Oh. Cool. I’ll git-r-done…then. But, I’m not as charming as you. This could be hard.”
“I’m sure you’ll figure something out. You’re very knowledgeable.”
About an hour later, sans free bottle, I had tasted myself into a good functional coma and was ready to break the seal. I made my way to the restrooms. The line was small, save for one person.
“Phew. Thought the line was going to be uncomfortable,” I chuckled to the loner in front of me.
Then he turned around and revealed himself…it was the Stephen, the winemaker I so joyfully insulted earlier.
“Phew is right.” He said.
“Wow. It’s the guy I insulted. This is…wow…………I really am sorry.”
“You know it was probably the grapes. Or the weather! I heard that region got an unusual amount of rain for the last couple of seasons and sometimes it can effect–”
“It’s the technique.”
“It’s the technique.”
“YOU SAID IT!”
“You’re a trip, you know that?”
“I have no idea what I’m talking about.”
“Well you sure act like you do.”
The toilet flushed and the commode opened up. He signaled for me to go ahead of him.
“Oh no, you were here first.”
“I insist.” He said.
I peed faster than lightning while ranting “it was probably just like one barrel that was off and I got two bottles from that barrel. I just need to try a different bottle from a different barrel, see.” When I emerged, he stopped me in the doorway.
“Come by the booth before you leave and I’ll give you a bottle.”
“Seriously. Just stop talking about it.”
I collected my booty from his booth and galloped over to Meatballs, waving the wine like a trophy.
“I got a free bottle of wine!”
“Good for you, hot mamma.”
“What did you call me?”
“It’s the white trash money thing, forget it. Did you extract it from them with your fancy wine talk?”
“Errrrrrrm yes. Sure did.”