For Mothers’ Day my son brought me lilacs from the yard. To smell them is a deep, divine pleasure. Each year I forget how wonderful they smell. My thrill is renewed during their short bloom. I inhale, and remember this simple, brief pleasure of life.
I have read about red wines that have floral aromas and flavors. I have tasted wines that have a hint of a red flower such as a rose. The other night I had Mark West Pinot Noir. In it I tasted a purple flower. Clearly, I tasted the vanilla of the oak. There was a nice tanginess to it as well in the finish. But in the front, with its soft texture, I caught a whisper of violet, a soft, purple floral taste that very gently surprised me. .
The only other wine in which I have experienced a brush of purple floral was Les Petites Roches Chinon from Charles Joguet, 2007. From Sazilly in the Chinon region of France that lovely Cabernet Franc was a smooth composition of cherry, and ginger with a subtle whisper of violets.
My daughter is portraying Julia Child for her Chautauqua in school this year. I’ve been helping her with the research, and between reading ‘Appetite for Life,’ and ‘My Life in France,’ and practicing that wonderful sing-song voice, I feel like we’ve been living with Julia for the past few weeks, which has been delightful!
What is so striking about her, is that Julia Child didn’t just bring French cooking to America. Her life’s work revolved around a great enthusiasm for life’s simple pleasures. Good food, good wine, and good conversations were the things that excited her and what she worked to bring to her own life as well as the lives of so many others.
Often times when I read or hear peoples’ stories about how they first became interested in wine, they talk about a particular bottle, and then describe the wine the way one would describe a first love. Sometimes they’re slowly seduced; sometimes they want to climb right inside the bottle. Sometimes they stop eating, stop talking, and just want to focus on the wine. Like great food, spring flowers, and spending time with loved ones, wine can be such a wonderful, simple pleasure in life that can be enjoyed and experienced again and again.