Former Austin hipster hears the music in wine
When Neil and Michael proposed writing a wine blog about a year ago, my inner hillbilly reared her head. I found the term “beer snob” a delightful oxymoron, and “wine snob” just plain redundant.
As a proud member of the beer drinking class, whenever I was asked to pick up wine on the way to a friend’s house for dinner, I was happy to spend just enough time in the wine aisle to locate the Rosemount Shiraz and move on. Once in the state-run liquor store nearest the University of Utah, an effete graphic design student from the East Coast had tutored me in its pronunciation and informed me that it was “marginally drinkable”.
And indeed, it was nectar compared to the ubiquitous Rolling Rock beer stashed into the sock drawers of every other non-Mormon on that dry campus. I already felt classy enough drinking out of a glass instead of a green bottle or a Nalgene, and to my mind, fussing any further about the subject of wine was suspiciously Yankee.
If love is a mix tape, wine is soulful vinyl
It’s not that I believed all wines were created equal. But going so far as to ask what was being served for dinner when choosing wine seemed downright bourgeois, and there was the further risk of developing an expensively discerning palate. Besides, in Austin, alcohol is an accessory — one that serves as extension of the musical mode you’re in.
When not going for the ironic look (in converse high tops with a Lone Star while at Emo’s waiting for Of Montreal to take the stage ), one’s options are chiefly whiskey, straight up or with soda (in skinny black jeans and cowboy boots to see Okkervil River at Stubbs), or a vodka tonic (my personal default). This drink is pensive, melancholic, and most importantly gentle enough to allow you to focus your soulful adoring gaze upon Bon Iver under the soft reddish glow of the Parish’s stage, a look for which it is necessary that both eyes be able to remain at least halfway open and stare in the same direction.
But what to make of the wine drinker’s mood? It could be anything… any drink with that variety of flavors seems downright shifty. And those wine glasses look ridiculously prudish next to a saddle-sized plate of enchiladas. Is that why one so rarely spots them out and about in Austin?
However, over the past year, I have conducted exhaustive research into these and other pressing cultural matters. And what I have learned, primarily over at Neil and Kathy’s house is shocking — namely that when Neil is cooking and Kathy pulls a bottle out of the cellar, one simply does not give a damn who is playing downtown. I’m learning that wine snobs may quite possibly be having more fun than the rest of us put together.
Check out these related posts: