“The French drink wines young, so a Socialist government won’t take them. The English drink them old, so they can show their friends cobwebs and dusty bottles. The American drink them exactly when they are ready, because they don’t know any better.”
“Wine is not fattening. It makes you lean—on friends, tables, walls.”
You may wonder what is special about wine, compared to, say, beer or single malt Scotch. It turns out that beer is not high enough in alcohol to age for long and whiskey is too high to change much with age. Wine is at the sweet spot where the aromatic complexity can change from year to year, often for the better. Most wines will not do well over a century, but a few have lasted that long and still been palatable.
Wine collectors who buy a 100 (or even several thousand) year old wine are paying for the cachet of having it to show to friends. By that age, few wines are really good for drinking.
Many news stories appeared in 2013 about a shipwreck of the coast of Varazze, Liguria, in northwestern Italy. The ship apparently had many amphorae (one Varazze amphora shown–they’re ancient bottles used for shipping containers) of wine and food that were shipped from Spain and bound for Italy about 2000 years ago. You probably would not want to drink the wine, if you could even still call it that, but many collectors wanted to buy some.
“You can only drink so many bottles of wine in your life, never drink a bad one.”
“Wine snobbery, of course, is part showmanship, part sophistication, part knowledge, and part bluff.”