|Posted by ella on September 20, 2010 at 12:30 AM|
The Flips Flipping Pages gathered at Cyrano's Wine Shop last Saturday to discuss Peter Mayle's A Good Year. It is a book about an English guy named Max, who inherited a vineyard in Provence and went there only to find out that the wine the land produced tasted bloody nasty.
A Good Year Movie Tie-in Edition
As Max accustomed himself with living in Provence, the Flippers experienced first-hand the proper way of drinking wine through a wine appreciation orientation with the help of Kathy Yao-Santos, Marketing Director of Happy Living Philippines Corporation, the distributor of Beringer Wines here in the Philippines.
Over three Beringer wines, namely: White Zinfandel 2009, Chenin Blanc 2009 and California Zinfandel 2008, we learned the correct way of observing the clarity of the wine, swirling it, smelling the aroma, "chewing the wine", then finally drinking (swallowing) it. Good thing too that the spitting of wine mentioned in the book was left out in the orientation for that is one thing I'm sure I could not have done gracefully.
White Zinfandel 2009 (Blush Wine)
Chenin Blanc 2009 (White) and California Zinfandel (Red)
Among the wines, the Chenin Blanc appealed to my palate the most. Described as a "well-balanced wine with aromas and flavors of crisp citrus, melon, and spicy ginger", I tasted just the right suaveness each time I sipped. Paired with the sumptious selection of food the Flippers brought for the discussion, I finally understood what Kathy told us about how drinking wine prepares our palate for eating. It sets the tone of our taste buds and makes us appreciate the food more.
Food! Glorious Food!
We covered a lot of ground that afternoon, from the proper storing of wine (you'll never go wrong with a wine chiller), to the types of wine glasses (thinnest is the best as it makes you more intimate with the wine). Alex Sawit, the good owner of Cyrano, humored us and showed us his bottle-opening prowess by opening a bottle of wine Cyrano-style!
Alex captivating his audience with his maneuver interspersed with the opened seal
Cyrano's wine selection
By the time we finished four bottles of wine, we Flippers were already a happy lot. ^_^ We started expressing our views on the book by using words and phrases usually associated with describing wines.
Gege, our moderator of the month, described it as "medium-bodied" because both the plot and the characters were not fully-developed.
Sasa, shared her views by saying that she thinks that the author thought of writing about wines and Provence first then thought of a plot that would complement the former. She further said that Mayle manages to entice the reader into wanting to go to Provence, providing an intimate feeling to the place. Hence, her allusion to the book as having an "alluring fragrance".
I think the book is "light and fruity " because it was written in a flowing manner and has a tinge of "whodunnit thing" goin on that kept me from putting it down. Also, it made me perpetually hungry with the constant mention of mouthwatering food all throughout the book.
Sasa drinking to good life!
That's me scrutinizing Fat Bastard with Em
A Good Year was adapted on the big screen in 2006 with Russell Crowe playing Max Skinner. I have yet to see this film but I have a feeling that I will immensely enjoy watching it if only for the sole reason of being able to feast my eyes on Provencal beauty! Who does not have that certain dream of living the good life Provencal style, eh?
Off to Provence!
I would like to thank fellow BookMooch Angel Melinda for sending me a copy of Peter Mayle's A Good Year via express mail so I can finish reading it in time for this discussion.
And to Rhett, who graciously allowed me to post his pictures here. I wish I could shoot pictures as good as yours. ^_^
Cheers to both of you Melinda and Rhett, may you have plenty of good years ahead!
Categories: Flips Flipping Pages