The Jerk: Not Steve Martin

So it's a bit late on a Saturday here and I will not try to snow you into thinking that I actually had a Friday Fermentable post that I just accidentally forgot to post yesterday.

However, I wanted to leave you with a link to a column by the husband and wife wine columnists for "Tastinggs" at the Wall Street Journal, Dorothy J Gaiter and John Brecher. Dottie and John capture the vibrancy of wine and its role in celebrating life like no other pair in the business.

They are serious but are not snobs - they encourage the full enjoyment of life that includes wine. Plus, they are the only wine writers who have ever made a suggestion of a good wine to accompany Southern boiled peanuts (one or both of them are from Keystone Heights, Florida - near Gainesville in that northern part of Florida that is really just south Georgia.).

For example, John and Dottie began OTBN: "Open That Bottle Night." On the last Friday of February they encourage readers to open that bottle of special wine they have sitting around that they never get to. The collection of stories they receive from reader experiences are heartwarming.

This week, they have updated their A-Z wine glossary they last published in 2003. As I have become a fan of Behind The Stick blogger, scribbler50, I thought this edition's "J" entry was appropriate:

Jerk. Because of the increasing confidence and sophistication of wine drinkers all over the world, more and more people hear an insufferable wine bore and say, "Wow, that guy [it's always a guy] is a jerk," instead of saying, "I guess I don't know anything about wine." In terms of wine, we think jerk is a term you will be hearing more in the next few years.

Enjoy - and a happy Saturday night to all in North and South America for whom it is still Saturday night.


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A raised glass to that! The best attitude to wine I have encountered was from the leader of a series of wine tastings I attended a number of years ago. We would duly inspect, sniff and taste the wines, applying the most poetic of language along the way, and he would encourage even the most farflung and odd phrases and words we chose to describe our impressions.

At the end of each tasting, however, he would always say something to the tune of "Remember that wine tasting is a subjective experience that ultimately is about answering a single question: did I like this? All the fancy language is just a way of following up the fundamental question with a bit of "why" and "what". Never assume that your subjective desription is interesting or even meaningful to anyone else."