Wednesday 25 July 2012

The Wine-Drinker's Catechism of Cliché: Canaletto Pinot Grigio

What are three physical characteristics habitually found in wine?
Nose, legs and body.

What is the table condiment invariably found in a red Côtes du Rhône?

What other elements of the larder or pantry make their way in?
Spices, berries, fruits, liquorice, chocolate, jam, plums, aniseed, raisins, vanilla, coffee.

What intangibles, not of the pantry or larder specifically, may be found in both red and white CDR?
Roundness, concentration, bouquet, palate, finish, undertones, firmness, structure, complexity, structure, fullness, notes, suppleness, earthiness, subtlety, minerality, depth, florality, aromas, length, finesse, integration, smoothness, character, intensity, balance, grip, elegance, bigness, crispness, vibrancy, richness, raciness, softness.

And might any of these terms be used, jointly or severally, with respect to just about any wine you have ever come across in your life?
They might.

What idea may one articulate of any red wine at a wine tasting or other assessment, with almost complete impunity?
The 2009 is ready for drinking now, but could benefit from being laid down for a few more years.

What ludic-sounding seasonal comestible is deemed good with just about any red you care to mention?

And in the absence of game?
Cheese, beef.

What phrase, redolent of a state unattainable in this world, accompanies these items?
Perfect with.

Name an acceptable variation on this phrase
Perfect for.

What summer events, occurences or pastimes in particular may a wine be deemed perfect for?
Picnics, barbeques.

But not?
Archery contests, mosquito bites, exams, scuba-diving, bush fires.

A wine-maker may fall into one of two categories. What are these two categories?
Exciting new; well-respected.

The inclusion of either phrase in the description of the wine will do what to the purchase price?
Add a substantial mark-up.

And what reflexive use of the lungs and head does one employ at the mention of the price of a White Burgundy?
Sighing, head-shaking.

Accompanied by what gnomic countervailing assertion?
This is all right if you've got deep pockets, but honestly, a Chilean Sauvignon Blanc would do the job just as well.

Followed by what indications, jointly or severally, of the Chilean wine's suitability for the task?
Its crispness, freshness, good acidity, hints of citrus, zestiness, approachability, texture, minerality.

Accompanied, but not invariably, by?
Notes of tropical fruits, hints of melon, delightful suitability as an apéritif.

A glass of Champagne is frequently held up to the light to admire what chromatic characteristic?
Its straw colour.

Not be confused with?
The grassiness of many a Sauvignon Blanc.

Is it the case that there are times when only Champagne will do?
It is.

On account of?
Its elegance, biscuity quality, fine mousse, finish, style, bottle-ageing, complexity and, let's be perfectly frank, snob appeal.

Given the nature of the world we live in, what value would you ascribe to that last quality?

Giving the lie to what hoary apothegm?
You can't judge a wine by its label.

What are you drinking at the moment?
Canaletto Pinot Grigio, marked down to 5.99 at Waitrose.

What hasty conculsion did you draw when you caught sight of the clearly-advertised in-store price reduction?
They've overstocked again.

What bisyllabic epithet most pertinently sums up the drinking qualities of this wine?

What quadrisyllabic epithet most pertinently sums up its desirability in your own eyes?

What dismissive trisyllabic epithet most pertinently sums up this wine's rarity, or lack of same, and by extension, the status and defining quality not only of the wine but of the drinker himself?

Thank you. That will be all

CJ   (With apologies to the late Myles na Gopaleen)


  1. An amusingly cynical little number - the article not the wine. (Would I buy a wine named after a painter? No but wouldn't buy a car named after one either.)

    1. Not a Citroen Picasso driver, then?

    2. No, but I occasionally have a Bacon sandwich.

  2. Much enjoyed, as one of the Plain People of Buyerland.


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