I have a good friend who is an equity analyst
and is beginning to be in the kind of income range
where he can enjoy the good life. About five months back, I basically tagged along
to a business dinner
he was headed to at a trendy
called The Federalist
(on Beacon Street
near the state house). I was more than happy to go, as it meant a high quality
meal for free and a lot of the kind of investment jargon
I used to speak before I moved out to the country and began spending the days writing in my bathrobe
. I pointed out to my friend that the various faux marble bust
s on display were not all representative of Federalist
s (I think of Thomas Jefferson
in particular), but that did little to detract from the experience
. I guess I should get to the wine part, but if you would like to read a little anecdote
, you should skip to the bottom.
Anyway, my friend really hyped up this red wine he'd recently tasted from the Caymus winery in, I believe, Napa Valley. He purchased several bottles of the 1996 vintage, but the restaurant's winelist offered the 1995 at about $150-160 per bottle; and as he explained that this was considered a superior vintage, we placed the order. Some Boston brokerage firm wound up paying for it.
I took some notes on the wine later that evening, and I came across them tonight almost at random. Nevertheless, they work well in recalling the experience to mind. It had a deep brick-red color, which I thought unusual in a five-year-old wine. It had an aroma of soft plum and spice--pleasant and not overpowering. It tasted velvety smooth, nicely balanced with just the right amount of hint of oak, and had a long, quiet finish. It was, in short, an elegant wine, and I am glad to have tasted it. If I had a complaint, it would be that it could probably have stood a few more years of age, as it was still relatively tannic. It must have been a big monster of a wine at its release. But I ordered a big old steak with peppercorn sauce, again on the broker's bill, so that was not a problem.
Was it money well spent? Hard to say. At about $30-40 per glass it seems steep, considering what you could get in the way of a vintage port for those kind of prices. But if you're looking to impress someone or have a special occasion, something like this could get people talking. I myself am trying to resist the urge to spend in the range of $200 on a few bottles of the 1997 vintage to hold onto.
As we left the restaurant, I noticed a very attractive woman walking toward us--tall, slender, about 27-28 years old, straight shoulder-length blonde hair, wearing a kind of sky-blue tube-top shirt that revealed that all-important inch and a half of skin in the navel latitudes. But most compelling (from a relatively inebriated male's point of view) were her sizable breasts. Not huge, mind you, but large for her frame, and she wore them well (if that is a proper thing to say). It occurred to me then that, were we living in more civilized times and I wore a hat outdoors, I could, without fear of censure, turn to this striking woman, doff my hat, smile, and greet her politely. But our society has left such pleasantries behind, and I was reduced to gawking mildly. Perhaps not the anecdote you expected, but there you go.
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