March 6, 2012
Like we discussed in our original post about #31 wine, having an appreciation for vino is key to projecting an all-knowing and betchy image. In recent years fine wine has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity among the middle class, taking its place alongside voting and incest on the list of activities that were once the exclusive of the very rich. While it takes a lifetime to truly understand fine wine, lucky for you, it only takes about three minutes to read this post and pretend to understand it.
Take a pretentious wine tasting class: Unlike all other scholarly pursuits that we wouldn’t even bother with, an understanding of wine is useful in everyday life. Plus, at the end of class you’ll be a) drunk and b) an authority on wine, which you can brag about, even if you weren’t paying attention to shit. In general it’s best to take classes for college students as they will not only be the most fun, but because the university system does the same thing for wine class that it does for the rest of American society: ensures that only people like you get in. Also never go for those lame classes at a wine shop, no matter how swanky the store. If your class involves learning about one particular wine each week—and the shop happens to have fifty cases of that wine for teaching materials—you may actually be learning how to run a small business, or paying to have your throat be the sink into which they toss their leftover inventory.
However, learning about wine without getting drunk is kind of like trying to study for finals while Mean Girls is on TBS: you just can’t do it. And since it’s never okay to drive when you’ve been drinking, as anyone who doesn’t drink will tell you, you’ll need to take wine class with at least one nice girl. You never want to be drunk alone with her though, so you’ll also need to bring another betch. Then you’ll need a third betch so two of you can talk about the other one, and at this point the class is full so the nice girl will have to wait in the car.
Learn the language: Once you’re at your wine class, you’ll need to do what you do for any class: act like you know everything already. As long as you act confident, you can do no wrong. The key to talking about wine is to never use words that relate to ingredients or flavors. Woody, with a hint of diffidence and a tungsten entendre is a great thing to say about a glass of wine. Real grapey is not. Also, 90% of the time, there’s ‘a hint of golden apple’ every time.
Pretend like you can taste different flavors: When you’re out to dinner and the waiter asks you what bottle you'd like, follow the basic rule—white with fish and red with meat—and go with one of his recommendations. If you’re the appointed taster-betch at any given meal, this is when you're supposed to “enjoy” the flavors and the body. Swirl it around in your glass and take a sip. Curl your eyebrow, tilt your head, and wait for the waiter to speak. Usually he'll start by explaining what it tastes like, the aromas, and what he thinks of it. As he’s explaining this, tune him out.
Know how to reject a bottle: Once you’ve completed your Oscar-worthy tasting act, no matter how much you like it, send it back. If it's the best red you've ever tasted and you're about to have a fucking orgasm under the table, still send it back. The excuse is easy. If the waiter described it as oaky, just say “I was looking for something a little less oaky." Seriously, nothing says class like making another human being throw out one bottle of wine and pour you and your besties a hypothetically better one.
So remember, when pretending to know about wine, it’s best to remain as pretentious as possible. Act blasé about your selection and you’ll find yourself pairing a diet coke with your Big Mac, fat ass.