Thursday, October 23, 2008

Defiling a Lovely Bottle of Wine

In this article, Slate's Mike Steinberger explores how the financial crisis has affected the wine world. I especially loved the way he opened his article:

Last week, New York magazine published an article about an unnamed Lehman Bros. trader coping with the firm's sudden demise and his lost riches.

One thing caught my eye: On the day it became clear that Lehman was kaput, the trader pulled a 1997 Barbaresco Santo Stefano out from under his desk, and he and some colleagues proceeded to drink it from paper cups.

The producer went unnamed (Santo Stefano is a vineyard), but the story said the wine cost $700. I e-mailed the writer, Gabriel Sherman, who told me the bottle was a double magnum.

Piecing together these details, I'm reasonably certain that the Lehmanites were numbing themselves with the 1997 Bruno Giacosa Barbaresco Santo Stefano. Giacosa is a winemaking god, and reading about the shabby treatment accorded his wine — stored under a desk! drunk from paper cups! — prompted the first real schadenfreude I've felt since Wall Street went on life support.


Anonymous said...

Reminds me of the scene in Sideways when Miles drinks a 1961 Cheval Blanc from a styrofoam cup in some greasy diner.

Food Dude said...

Yes, it does. That was a good movie. Maybe I liked because I have an opinion of Merlot that's pretty similar to what the lead character thought of it -- a good grape for blending, but kind of bland on its own. Speaking candidly, I'm not all that fussy about the cup or glass I'm drinking from.