Mar 272012
 

Spanish wineJose asked me to be the translator for his seminar in San Francisco, and I was honored and delighted—the wines were all  “cepas raras:” rare vines from varietals that are only now getting discovered.  It was a real adventure tour through some of the lesser known regions of Spain, with vines that simply expanded our perceptions of what wine can be.

And we laughed. Jose is someone who loves a good story, and he knows how to tell one.  The trick was to try and capture his humor, while still staying true to the translation.  I am not sure I succeeded, but I sure had fun.

And in the end, Jose made a point of talking about wine in general.  He noted that there are lots of wines that are great for “tasting,” but those don’t always turn out to be wines that are great to drink.  So he has two classes of wines in his mind.  “Tasting” wines that show beautifully on their own, and impress everyone.   And wines for drinking, that he likes to drink with dinner.  While many of the wines in this tasting were not particularly perfect for the “tasting” category, they all offered some wonderful combinations with food.

After the tasting, we walked out to join the walk-around tasting, featuring more than seventy top Spanish wine producers all pouring their best wines. And I was able to talk a few of them into letting me take a bottle with me, so that I could teach about it the next day at the Culinary Institute of America.

The class?  The wines of Spain.  I figured that I’d done my homework on this one

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