Take a seat at any table in California and almost without exception or expectation, you will face its holy trinity: wine.
This triumvirate is the cornerstone of California living. Like eating in Italy is a revelation, drinking wine in California is to understand where its heart is at –– what is most important.
One year here and counting, I’ve tried more grapes than remembered. I’ve swirled enough stemmed glasses of robust deliciousness to make my pinkies dexterous. I’ve feasted on enough wine to become full. I’ve met and drank with charming sommeliers to now call friends. And I’ve adventured to Napa, Sonoma, and beyond.
Last night, I tried a local winemaker’s cab sauvignon bottle, ‘Scotoni.’ The night before that, I finished a northern California vineyard’s Merlot. The week before that, a ‘Double Gold’ winner from Napa got the best of my Sunday afternoon. The time before that my dad (who was visiting San Francisco for the first time) and I split a Little Star pizza and a local red. A couple months before that, 10 friends and I split two cars and road-tripped to Napa to prove the vineyards weren’t a mirage.
All in all, to drink wine is incredible.
To savor the taste of the grapes; swirl it around on your tongue; let it gradually swish across the sides of your mouth and then hit the dry back part of your mouth; see your friends take a sip and smile simply with their eyes; watch the fluid movements and charming manner of a wine pourer or sommelier –– is to see that wine isn’t just a part of California culture. It is the creative and fulfilling essence of its life.
Have it and your mouth will remember it forever.