Last night we greatly enjoyed a wine tasting with Lourdes of the Vine at lil dove cafe in the Jersey City Heights. I had it planned as a special date night and it didn’t disappoint with its special-ness.
Full disclosure, every time I go to a wine tasting I’m drunk beforehand or I get too drunk during and forget everything. I’ve even gone on a wine-tasting only vacation and didn’t learn a single thing.
But this one I remember some things from!
We were seated in the backyard kind of class-room style facing the front FOR INSTRUCTION and I made us sit in the front row because we sit in the front row in this family. Because I’m deaf and can’t hear in the back…but I also like being in the front and raising my hand and volunteering for things. I’m basically an ideal audience member.
lil dove cafe’s backyard is so peaceful and lovely and there were lights and trees and art and a water dispenser to the side to promote hydration. And wine!
There was a cute little wine and pairing items menu and a cool placemat thing that I didn’t fully understand and still don’t but respect it as a system.
After we sat down they immediately brought out the BIGGEST AND MOST ALLURING CHARCUTERIE BOARD OF ALL TIME. I mean, it was MIND BLOWING. LIKE WOW.
We started to ravenously gobble it right away but then were embarrased to realize we were probably supposed to save it for the pairing/tasting. So we stopped eating it but by the end of the night we hadn’t eaten it all but we couldn’t eat anymore and I still feel guilty about that.
But the wine! It was “natural” wine, which seems to be defined in some capacity by “farming that doesn’t f**k over everything else on the planet.” And it was good! The first one we tasted was Lambrusco and of course that’s a fav because it’s the perfect pizza wine.
For the second wine Lourdes really broke down the tasting process and I learned a TON I am NOT JOKING. She spoke a lot about “sensory memory,” like using senses and things you’ve sensed before and apply that to the new current thing you are sensing. And I loved that!
It turns out that accessing old sensory experiences to interpret new sensory experiences in your brain is a great and mind blowing idea. I never thought of it that way and it makes me understand wine tasting better as an an activity.
When people smell wine and swirl it around and look at the color and have opinions and conversations about it based on their senses…I pretty much have thought that was bullshit for a long time. Maybe not bullshit but like, “I don’t understand how it works so it’s not for me.” But last night I felt like i found some understanding! Like something just finally clicked, between wine and I. The smells and tastes made sense. I was killin it.
The sensory memory thing really got me, you guys.
Lourdes also reminded us that when the wine is first poured – don’t drink it right away! “Take a moment with the wine. Namaste with the wine.” In the past I have always gulped all of mine before we even talk about it and then I have nothing to test out. So I believe this is probably a good thing for me to remember and I’ll be a better wine taster in the future.
LOOKING FORWARD TO IT.