Sunday, July 24, 2022

Exclusive: Interview with a Bottle of Italian Wine

It’s been a while since we last chatted, so I figured it was time to set up the recorder and ask my favorite bottle of Italian wine how their life is these days. Come along for the ride, let’s see what they have to say for themself.

Q. The last time we talked, you had just been filled with a wine from the 2017 harvest. How are things developing?

A. Thanks for asking. It’s been about 4 ½ years since then, and it’s been a cool, dark journey. But what would you expect? I mean, it’s not like we’re ready.

Q. OK then, so what have you been mulling over these past 4 ½ years?

A. Ah, yes, lots of time to think. Well, we don’t hear much in this part of the cellar, but it seems you humans have been having quite a go of it, what with this virus, the global climate situation and certain bellicose political figures, both in power and removed from.

Q. Oh God, don’t get me started. Yeah. I think coming from the challenging harvest of 2017 sounds like a cakewalk compared to the mucking about we’ve been doing out here in the light. But tell me, what do you think of the wine inside you?

A. You know, it’s not bad. There were some challenges around harvest time, so I’ve heard from the cellarmaster who roams these caves. But overall, I think for the wine that we have with us, it should have a good run.

Q. what does it feel like, to be a vessel that holds the liquid we know as wine. Is it like being pregnant? Is it euphoric? Do you get a contact buzz? Tell me..

A. It’s nothing like that. We’re a neutral surface and so we have the barest of contact with the alcohol. And we didn’t give birth to the grapes, so that’s not an emotion we feel down here. No, it’s more like quiet expectation. It takes a lot of patience to wait for the moment of the great release. And it’s different for every bottle, every wine in here. I’d say it’s a humbling experience to cradle this liquid that theoretically was born to give pleasure. If there is any contact high, it’s knowing that.

Q. Wow, interesting. So, your role is more like that of a Vestal Virgin, to maintain the fire, so to speak.

A. Yes, that’s it! we must make sure the fire doesn’t go out, metaphorically. And the fire is the spirit that embodies wine.

Q. Anything about the grape itself, what it feels like, its spirit? Can you offer anything to enlighten us about this part of the process?

A. Again, that’s hard to tell, as I haven’t had any experience with any grape, let alone the one(s) that are inside me. From what I can tell, it’s a lively variety, very spirituoso. Also, very sensitive to change, to light, to movement, to temperature fluctuation. Sometimes it’s like walking on eggshells around here. One must tread lightly, or as lightly as a bottle of wine can tread, if you know what I mean.

Q. Oh, I get it. So, when do you guys get out? And where do you go from here?

A. I wish I knew. I believe our appellation has already been released. So, I am assuming we must be a riserva of some sort. Or a library release. In any case, I heard a rumor we might be heading out in the autumn when the weather cools down. Right now, we’re still in the cages, waiting to be labeled and boxed up. If I had my druthers, I’d like to stay here, in Italy. But the winery owner loves Thailand and New York. I guess we’ll see. I just don’t want to find myself on some hot, balmy island in the Caribbean. Not so much fun for a wine of this sort.

Q. Wrapping up, is there one thing about this experience that our readers could take away?

A. Most definitely. And that is, this will pass. Whatever it is you’ve been going through, it's part of an evolution. It isn’t the final destination. We’re all going somewhere eventually. The key is to stick it out and be patient, and a little courageous, and not without the hope that wherever you might be heading will be exactly where you were meant to go. Hey, not too bad for an insentient vessel made from sand.

Q. That’s certainly sagacious reasoning. The wisdom of the desert sands. Well, good luck and safe travels, wherever you end up.

A. Same to you. Alla nostra salute!

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