Tonight I am going to challenge the very gods in the heavens by confronting their representative here on earth—the Lovely Louise. You may recall that in a previous blog Louise and I visited the Napa Valley in California. During that trip we paid a visit to the Grgich Hills Winery and bought a case of very expensive wine. We would not normally have done that, but Louise got slightly out of her cups and fell in love with their Cabernet Sauvignon. So we ordered a case to be shipped to Florida. When this case arrived she informed me that the wine was too good (and expensive) for either of us to drink. We bought a wine cooler to keep it at the proper temperature, and there the wine has sat for the past year. When Louise said that we weren’t good enough to drink the wine, she wasn’t kidding around. Well, a year is long enough. I’m not going to ask her … I’m going to tell her that I plan to break open one of those babies and have myself some very expensive wine tonight. I may even ask her to join me, but that will depend on whether or not she decides to kill me for hitting her stash. I just reread that last sentence and realized what false bravado that was. I’m not going to “tell” her anything; I’m going to beg her to let me have a bottle. I’ve been a good boy for most of a year now, and I will use that good behavior to plead my case. We’ll just have to see. I’m not really a wine drinker, I’m more into bourbon and vodka. I don’t even drink beer. Since I started working out at a gym, I’ve stopped drinking and lost four pounds in the last week, so I’ve decided to celebrate tonight by having a glass or two of wine to reward my efforts. Why is wine okay? Glad you asked. I’ll let my father explain. My father has always been a professional drinker. Never have I known anyone who could drink as much as that man and still get up first thing in the morning and do a full day’s work without even having a hangover. Me? I’d be in bed for several days if I drank like he did. He used to tell me that he never got sick because there was too much alcohol in his system and no bug could possibly survive. Maybe he was right, because I’ve never seen him sick. Quite a few years ago he told me he was going to quit drinking for the month of January because he thought it would be good for him. I don’t know what started him on this health kick, but I encouraged it, agreeing that it would do him good. Sometime in the middle of January I stopped by his house at about 8:00 in the evening and found him in the kitchen. He had his head down on the table, and I could hear him quietly snoring. I shook him gently to wake him up. As I did so, I noticed two empty bottles of wine on the table, and a third had been opened and started. It took a while to get him to realize I was there, and it was quite obvious that he had drunk a little more than two bottles of wine. When I had his attention I asked about the wine and accused him of breaking his promise not to drink for the month. Here is exactly what he said to me: “I did quit drinking. Wine’s not drinking!” I never knew that, but one should always listen to one’s father. In celebration of my having gone to the gym three times a week for the last three weeks and giving up my Black Russians and my cherished Woodford Reserve bourbon, I’m going to drink wine. This is okay, since my father has told me that wine is not really drinking. After all, if you can’t trust your father . . . After pestering Louise for most of the day, I finally got permission to have a bottle of the good stuff … although I’ve been warned to only open one bottle of the least good stuff we have—the one that only cost $85.00 a bottle. I had to promise to save the “good” wine for a special occasion. There hasn’t been a special occasion in more than a year, and I doubt there is one in our near future, so it looks like my mission is still a work in progress. I have noticed that I’m saving quite a bit of money without drinking the hard liquor, however, and that’s a good thing. So here’s what happened. I opened a 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon and poured myself a decent-sized glass. It tasted wonderful. I’m not really a wine drinker, but I truly enjoyed this wine. Wanting to make this incredible wine last longer than one night, I switched wines, and poured the next glass from a bottle of Rex Goliath, which sells for about $8.00 a bottle. I’m not sure I should admit this, but it tasted about the same to me as the $85.00 bottle. I can’t decide if this is a good thing or a bad thing. At least I’m no longer after Louise to let me drink the good stuff, since I clearly can’t tell the difference between expensive wine and cheap wine. I should have learned this in college. I wonder if they still make Boone’s Farm Apple Wine?