Your Spouse and Wine
How does one actually begin to know someone? Think about your better half. In the beginning, you spent time alone together and then probably with her friends, and you believed you knew her well… Until she brought you home to meet her mom and dad, her brothers and sisters, and the rest of her family.
I am willing to bet that you began to comprehend the sort of person she was after becoming acquainted with the people and places she grew up with and around. I’m sure you became more closely connected and your adoration of her grew in ways you never thought it would. In many respects, wine is the same way.
Wine has character. No one bottle is the same. It evolves and becomes something else after a number of years of “maturing.” But it is also “born” somewhere and was “raised” by somebody.
I’ve recently had this experience with Barolo. I’ve returned from the Langhe hills of the Piedmont in Northern Italy. My experience there was, in several respects, life-changing.
I’ve a great passion for the wines of this area and for its: 1) Culture (the meeting point of Alpine, French, and Italian culture); 2) Customs (the result of its being a frontier area and a once intensely independent state); 3) History (again the result of its location linking Italy to France and to Switzerland); and 4) Gastronomy (think Italian food, French-style).
For so long, I did not understand why I felt so interested in Barolo, but I now see why. The Piedmontese have a close relationship with wine and food, like most Italians. However, they express their relationship in a fashion that can’t be mimicked because nobody else has shared their unique experience.
Barolo is distinctively Italian, but uniquely Piedmontese… The result of being born on the border of three countries. Naturally the wine is good, but Barolo and the Piedmont fascinate me so much because, in many ways, it is reminiscent of my home, Alsace. Both regions are on the frontier, both are at the meeting point of at least two cultures, and both have really glorious viticultural traditions.
The Piedmontese experience is quite similar to the Alsatian one, and in a way it’s almost as if I found my soulmate. Love is your soul’s recognition of its counterpart in another. Cheesy I know, and it is not my line either, but it is accurate.
I’m a romantic, and I find wine to be romantic. Sure, it is a libation to enjoy, but it is more than a drink. Wine is not only the result of agriculture and science. It’s the result of people, places, traditions and love!
Nic Haegeli still considers himself rather new to the wine business, but he now has a few years of experience as a wine manager at Colonial Spirits, a Maynard liquor store. With a BA in History and a Master of Public Policy in International Relations, Nic never imagined himself working with wine. Nonetheless, he did grow up in Alsace, France… Thus it is sensible when you know where he comes from.Colonial Spirits would like to invite you to stop by our store for one of our many wine tastings. If you can’t come by the physical store, then please consider our online liquor store. Colonial Spirits Delivers offers wine delivery anywhere in Eastern Massachusetts!