Bovine Humor at the Wine Club

A few glasses of red wine ago, I was browsing my favorite website for images (iStockphoto) when I happened across the illustration below (minus the caption at that stage).

The cartoon tickled me greatly so I bought it and had some fun coming up with suitable tag lines. I settled on the one shown, but I am sure there are plenty better so if you have a funny line of your own, please add it in the comments below.

wine club humor

As much as I enjoy a good wine, I also enjoy a good laugh – preferably together – and this cartoon got me thinking about wine humor in general.

According to Wikipedia, “humor is usually rare in the world of wine“. This seems most unusual, as wine is associated with enjoyment and good times with friends.

Wikipedia goes on – “wine jokes may only be amusing to wine obsessives” – and this may explain the apparent lack of humor often associated with wine. Perhaps wine lovers, too often, take wine, too seriously.

Therein lies the cue to introduce some cows. Or any animals which are capable of engendering mirth. I think the cows have it, a fact picked up on very successfully by the great Gary Larson.

far side by gary larsonIn case you have forgotten, Gary Larson is the superb cartoonist who gave us the brilliant Far Side series, as well as other humorous drawings and writings.

Larson’s humor was built very much around unusual people, animals and situations and for me, the most memorable of his brilliant works are those featuring animals, especially the beloved cow.

To go with your next relaxation opportunity, wine accompanied of course, you could do no better than have at hand the Complete Far Side by Gary Larson.

Highly recommended – click the book cover at left to grab a copy.

 

But now back to wine matters, and specifically wine clubs, which is what the cows are discussing in the cartoon above.

Like the cows, I have been a member of a number of different wine clubs but have usually found after a few months that there is a sameness in the product being offered – either in wine styles or wine makers.

However, this is not an issue with the Cellars Wine Club who offer a dozen different options with a wine club for every wine preference. Here is a summary of what is currently on offer:

Wine Club

Offer per Shipment

Best For

Single Bottle 1 bottle quality wine wine novice
High End Single Bottle 1 bottle rare wine connoisseur
Premium 2 different wines experimenter
Sweet 2 different wines sweet tooth
Champagne 2 different wines sparkling lover
Red Trio 3 different wines red lover
International 2 different wines traveler
West Coast 2 different wines best American
Platinum 2 different wines aficionado
90+ Point 2 different wines discerning
Quarterly Case 12 bottles quality wine value seeker
Cellars 2 different wines indulgence

 

Whether you are looking for something different from a wine club, or a wine club membership as a gift, or just an excuse to get more wine for your cellar, check out Cellars Wine Club – it is the best wine club by a country mile, no bull!

Is this the Best Wine Movie Since Sideways?

A lot of movie lovers, and most wine lovers, agree that the best wine movie ever is Sideways.

Sideways works for lots of reasons and it remains one of the few movies I have been able to watch more than once. If you are longing for another view (or checking it out for the first time), grab the Sideways DVD now.

best wine movie

The best wine movie Sideways may be under threat. (Image sxc.hu)

Incidentally, there are moves afoot for a sequel to Sideways, called Vertical (what else?) written by the same author, Rex Pickett. The main stumbling block to Vertical appears to be the director of Sideways, Alexander Payne, who fears any follow up to Sideways would be a sell-out.

From a wine perspective, Sideways created a worldwide demand for Pinot Noir red wine as a result of the movie’s main character, Miles.

Miles waxed lyrical about the merits of Pinot Noir in an entertaining and informative way, and in the process moved masses of wine drinkers from other red wine types (especially Merlot, which he detested) to Pinot Noir.

If you are yet to experience the delights of Pinot Noir, check out the huge range of Pinot Noir here.

So what is this best wine movie since Sideways?

It goes by the unlikely name of Somm, short for sommelier.

A sommelier is (according to Wikipedia) a “trained and knowledgeable wine professional, normally working in fine restaurants, who specializes in all aspects of wine service as well as wine and food pairing.”

The movie is essentially a documentary following four young men who are preparing for the entrance exam of the Court of Master Sommeliers. The exam is touted as “the hardest exam you’ve never heard of”.

The Master Sommelier exam is so difficult that the pass rate runs at about ten percent and there are less than two hundred sommeliers worldwide who have passed it since it commenced in 1977.

It is expensive to sit for the exam, it covers virtually every conceivable piece of wine information known to man and is described as a “brutal” experience, capable of wrecking lives, relationships and taste buds. What more could any movie going wine lover want?

So get yourself a nice glass of Pinot Noir and watch the Somm trailer below. Then you can decide whether this might be the best wine movie since Sideways.

Cheap Wine Online Shopping

cheap vintage wineIn my student days and with the relative poverty associated with that phase of life, cheap wine was a given and the quality not so great.

Cheap wine has always been with us but now it seems we can get (especially with online shopping) quality wine at a low price.

Having said that, there does seem to be huge discrepancies in the price of wines these days.

At one end of the spectrum I recently wrote about rare expensive wines costing up to $168,000 a bottle.

The other extreme has wine at just a few dollars a bottle, and quite often, the quality of these inexpensive wines is extremely good.

So how do you go about finding a quality cheap wine, and can they be obtained through online shopping?

For the first question, the only sure way of finding a wine that tastes good at an affordable price is to try it, but who has the time or inclination to do that?

 

The better option is to look for wines that have been rated and the most widely accepted wine rating scale is that developed by Robert Parker.

The famous Robert Parker 100 point scale rates wines on a variety of criteria and can be confidently used as the basis for judging the quality of a wine. Of course it takes no account of price which we will address shortly as the second question posed above.

If a wine scores ninety and above on the Robert Parker scale, as explained here, then it is worthy of serious consideration irrespective of the price:

96-100:

An extraordinary wine of profound and complex character displaying all the attributes expected of a classic wine of its variety. Wines of this caliber are worth a special effort to find, purchase, and consume.

90 – 95:

An outstanding wine of exceptional complexity and character. In short, these are terrific wines. (Courtesy of erobertparker.com)

Now, is it possible to buy cheap wines which score ninety points or more?

Most certainly, and online shopping provides the best opportunity to do so with the largest range.

We recommend the online wine shop at wine.com, and in particular view this selection of top quality cheap wines under 20 dollars which score 90 or more points. Well worth a look – there is some superb drinking here.

If I may beg your indulgence before you head off to buy some quality cheap wine with wine.com’s online shopping, I refer to the theme at the start of this article, namely my student days.

At that time of my youth there was a catchy popular song by the name, Cheap Wine. If you are interested in yesteryear rock music, have a watch of this video, then go and get those quality cheap wines.

To your good health!