The Word on Wine
A shop at a Southern California Winery with many witty signs and other fun gifts

"Life is too short to drink bad wine." That is on my wall at home. It's painted in bold all-caps on a piece of reclaimed wood in a fun crafty way that's really trendy right now. I can't say it's my favorite wine quote. But it comes in handy when I'm pondering an exceptionally satisfying Pinot at a ​winery I'm discovering in my constant quest to... well, discover more wineries. I bought the wall art in a tasting room that had plenty of clever wine sayings to choose from. At the time, I was on my third winery, and so it's probably understandable that my "Life is too short..." sign only narrowly beat out another that said "Wine makes my clothes fall off."

My favorite wine quote is from a guy born in the 16th century who is better known for his astronomical discoveries than for his musings about popular beverages. Galileo Galilei uttered the most sublime, poetic wine quote ever, as far as I'm concerned, when he said​,​ "​W​ine is sunlight, held together by water." Love that! And it doesn't get more poeticky (yes, I made up that word, and you can use it if you want) than Robert Louis Stephenson's​:​ "Wine is bottled poetry."

Lot's of famous people have said some memorable things about how much they dig their vino. Obvious conclusion: loving wine makes you famous.

Ernest Hemingway said, in a burst of superlative adoration, "Wine is one of the most civilized things in the world and one of the most natural things of the world that has been brought to the greatest perfection, and it offers a greater range for enjoyment and appreciation than, possibly, any other purely sensory thing." Wow. Waiter, I'll have what Ernie's having, please. He also is famously credited with this zinger that I've borrowed from time to time: "I drink to make other people more interesting."

Our founding fathers put a really high value on life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness... and apparently wine​,​ too. Thomas Jefferson, principal author of the Declaration of Independence, also authored this commentary: "By making this wine vine known to the public, I have rendered as great a service to my country as if I had enabled it to repay the national debt." His fellow patriot, Benjamin Franklin, credited wine with some far-reaching attributes when he said, "Wine makes daily living easier, less hurried, with fewer tensions and more tolerance." I couldn't agree more, Ben.

So some of the greatest minds in history agree with my own great mind that wine is good for your overall happiness, but what about my questionable contention that wine is good for your health? I knew it was mostly wishful thinking until I read that French scientist Louis Pasteur claimed, "Wine is the most healthful and most hygienic of beverages." Cheers to that, Monsieur Louie!

It may seem like I've been gushing about how wonderful wine is. Hey, don't shoot the messenger, I'm just quoting. But in order to present a more balanced report, I will close with a quote from another one of those crafty wine signs that made me smile, despite its denigration of my favorite liquid. It read:

Dear wine,

We had a deal. You were supposed to make me funnier, smarter, sexier, and a better dancer. I saw the video. We need to talk.

And when we talk, I'll reluctantly forgive you for your broken promises. How could anyone hold a grudge against bottled poetry?


~ Kay Syrah

Wine Country Guru Gal

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