By contributing writer Steve Gross
Simply put: I like wines that smell good. They can be subtle or strong, but I want them to smell good. After that, I want those smells to stay with me as I drink the glass, not simply disappear into watery, tasteless nothingness.
I should probably stop right there, but you know how this goes. I’ll try not to pontificate much further from this point on, however.
New Wine Drinkers
My wish for newer wine drinkers is that they find at least one wine that really smells great. I’m pretty sure that once that happens, they’ll begin to ask questions and possibly demands from their wine. They’ll eventually insist that the wines they drink offer something special; note, not necessarily expensive or famous, just special.
What I smell in a lot of lower-priced, mass-produced wines is chemicals. Synthetic, plastic-like smells. I don’t really want to drink them at that point. A good, fresh glass of cold water would do just fine (no lemon, please). I would consider my job done if I could save newer wine drinkers from plastic.
Wine By the Glass
This brings us to wine by the glass, one area where many enter the wine drinking ranks. My experience is that most wine-by-the-glass lists in restaurants would NEVER encourage anyone to delve deeper into wine. In fact, many of the by-the-glass wines smell like those chemicals I talked about earlier.
This is really too bad, since the $8 Chardonnay at the corner restaurant has a real opportunity to initiate new wine drinkers and even encourage them to order the more expensive stuff down the road. Mostly, it’s over chilled and thin.
Though I live in one of the petrochemical capitals of the world, I stand in opposition to chemical aromas and flavors in the wines I drink. Who’s with me?
Steve Gross likes wine that smells good, moves him to states of reverie, and demands a second, third, or fourth taste. Seeking these wines keeps him busy, but he somehow finds time to work as a Special Education Teacher and to guide birdwatchers throughout Texas and the Western US. Look for Steve wherever great food and wine, mountains, birds, and fresh air are found.