As yesterday’s Blog post was a touch serious I thought I’d allow this site to sink to new depths – this is all about toilets so look away now…actually it’s about toilet walls (do you see where this is going?).
Wine can be a simple case of drinking. As a friend once said, the best tasting note is “gets you pissed”. But those of us who seem to enjoy more than the mere inebriation factor can extend our hobby in seemingly endless ways.
You have the collectors, of course, those who, er, surreptitiously enter their cellars to stroke the bottles and look at the labels. Some merely keep a cellar book, read a wine book a month, keep their best corks in a goldfish bowl, have vineyard maps on the wall, keep a few cherished empties on a shelf, have photo frames with champagne capsules in them, stick wine labels into scrap books, own too many different wine glasses, have vines in the garden and collect antique corkscrews. Sadly I do all of these except one (the last).
But there’s another level to the wine obsession, one I discovered on moving into my current home many years ago, when I realised I hated the wallpaper in our upstairs toilet. I can’t remember where I got the idea but I’m sure I’ve seen literature lovers paper their loos with words of mercury, or photo fanatics cover them with prints of old daguerreotypes. In any case, no one in the family seemed to object so off I went.
It actually took a few years to complete the project. Sometimes, when wine friends ask to see it, they are mildly disappointed. Perhaps they expect to see a roll call of France’s finest. Well some of those are there, but the walls reflect more modest drinking too. I don’t hide the supermarket wines which occasionally appear, nor the merchant blends from the likes of Moillard which may have been a last minute purchase at the Calais duty free. The Champagne labels are largely Grande Marque NV as well. Yet I’m pleased my long love for the wines of the Jura region is betrayed, as also Piemonte in all forms. Some wines are sadly no longer made (Conterno Printanié), nor affordable (I’m proud of all the Chave Hermitage and Vernay Condrieu labels).
The walls don’t really reflect my current passions all that well (grower Champagne, natural wine, Austria and Beaujolais are pretty much absent in any number), but I still enjoy reflecting on what I used to drink…when I remember to take my glasses…and forget to take a wine magazine…