To me, what matters most about a wine is whether it moves the mind and the heart. Does a wine send thoughts on a quest for new territory, seeking something not quite present, exploring multiple meanings, inspiring speculations, and promising more provocations to come? Wine commands our attention because it generates a unique sensation, something out of the ordinary, and we become open to what more it might have to say. The alcohol is a necessary part of this. It modifies our mood and allows us to engage the world sympathetically. Once achieved, that sympathetic engagement makes us fully available for what the wine can express.
That remarkable sensation sympathetically engaged uncovers a wines spirit, it’s vitality. A delicate Pinot Noir not only tastes and smells differently from an Australian Syrah—it feels different to taste it. The wine reveals an energy that seems to track human feeling states and we begin to construct a concept of the wine’s personality.
The essence of wine are these garrulous tides, the nerve and pulse, that give wine its rhythm.