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Pour Babies

A wine snob’s argument for wine snobbery

You know that sommelier who said the only good wine is the kind you enjoy? The guy who told you not to worry about all those weird words on the bottle, such as “France”?

He sure was a nice man.

He made you feel like everyone’s opinion is equally valid because we’re all special little butterflies. While some people know more about wines, we all know what’s most important: us.

No. Wine will not fall victim to the Oprah-ization of our culture. Choosing wine is not like searching for your soul mate. You don’t emerge from a wine tasting twirling around with your hands above your head and singing about how you’ve discovered you’re really an Argentinean Malbec person. Wine is not your ringtone, your Zazzle iPhone case, or your annoying sign-off quote at the bottom of your e-mail.

When you say, “I only like Sauvignon Blanc,” you sound like someone who says, “I only like pasta alla vodka.” If you drink Sauvignon Blanc with a steak at a ski resort, you aren’t a Sauvignon Blanc person. You’re an idiot who is ruining your meal and everyone else’s. Because when the rest of us see you do that, we feel like we’re scraping our teeth on a sheet of tinfoil. Go to Bologna and tell your waiter that you’re a Malbec person and see if that goes over better than telling your guide to Mecca that you’re a Jew person.

Sorry, but you have to learn about wine. The same way you have to learn about literature, classical music, and everything else that you avoid because you think your ’80s on 8 Sirius station still rocks. You don’t know what’s good because you have to drink a whole lot of different kinds of wine to know what’s good, and you’re too lazy to even drink different wine. It’s as if you stopped eating food after eating McDonald’s. I’m sure they serve a great McMalbec there.

In fact, you can’t even know what you like about that Malbec until you’ve had a good Burgundy to compare it with. And you’re never going to have a good Burgundy because no one will pour it for someone who says they’re only a Malbec person.