Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Snort Time

     (A new series for Liberty’s Torch? Perhaps.)

     If you’re “of a certain age,” you might remember Francis Ford Coppola’s early triumph The Godfather. This towering movie and its equally impressive sequel both won the Oscar for Best Picture, and deservedly so. Marlon Brando’s performance as Vito Corleone was among the best of his career. Al Pacino’s portrayal of Vito’s son Michael was his launching pad to stardom. Many who had thrilled to Mario Puzo’s novel of the Corleone family and its conflicts had a hard time sincerely saying “I liked the book better.”

     The Godfather offers many striking moments. But for me, the snippet I cherish most and will remember longest is this one:

     I, too, like to drink wine more than I used to...and here at the Fortress of Crankitude, there’s a special moment reserved for the day’s first glass of wine: 3:00 PM Eastern time. We call it Snort Time.

     Snort Time takes precedence over anything else that might be going on. I could be in the middle of a Nobel Prize In Literature-winning sentence. The C.S.O. could be balancing the Vatican’s own books. All that will be set aside for that first glass of “the fruit of the vine and work of human hands.” (The dogs and cats don’t get a vote, though they do get Greenies and catnip.)

     In recent years, owing to our discovery of a number of absolutely smashing New York State wineries, Snort Time is often a time of discovery as well as of bibulous pleasure. We’ve made a point of getting onto those wineries’ PR mailing lists, so that we’ll be notified as soon as some new vintage or new varietal is introduced to the consuming public. We seldom fail to “buy in”...and we seldom fail to enjoy what follows.

     Today arrived a shipment from one such winery: Chateau Lafayette Reneau, in Hector NY: a case of its award-winning 2017 Dry Riesling. Upon the arrival of Snort Time today, I opened the case, uncorked a bottle, and poured glasses for the C.S.O and myself.

     I’m not a technical expert in the assessment or description of a wine, so I’m not going to go into a long discourse about the aroma, the foretaste, the balance of tannins and sugars, or anything else the pseudosophisticates who style themselves “oenophiles” would dribble endlessly on about. (Around here we call them “wine snobs.” We won’t have them in our home.) Instead I’ll simply tell you that this is a delightful beverage: slightly tart and slightly sweet, with a unique and refreshing character. Were I anything but the superbly disciplined, even Spartan epicure all Liberty’s Torch readers know me to be, I’d find it easy to drink far too much of it. (Yes, I’m still struggling to lose the last 15 pounds. Thanks so much for asking.)

     Chateau Lafayette Reneau takes orders over the phone or Web. It ships to all of New York and several other states. Give its 2017 Dry Riesling a try. You won’t regret it.

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