“I love to cook with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food.” This is a refrigerator magnet that my sister found for me and while we do frequently add wine to our dishes, the quotation does properly convey our love of the vine. We make no claim to being wine experts much less in the class of oenologists, and despite my husband’s chiding, refusing to drink red with poached fish in a dill sauce does not make me a wine snob. Like many Americans, we embrace wine as a staple in our house and on those occasions when a lingering lunch out is feasible, a glass or two of wine in often a part of it. In fact, there continues to be a wonderful memory of a lovely harbor in St Martin that involved lobster salad, a crisp white wine, and fresh french bread, but that is the stuff of another post.
Anyway, yesterday we went to the newly opened Total Wine store that is a mere 30 minute drive. When we lived in Northern Virginia we had easy access to a Total Wine and while we enjoy much about South Florida, there’s just something about being able to walk into a store that carries more than 5,000 wines, 2,500 beers, and spirits in the case of Florida. Don’t get me wrong, our local supermarkets have decent wine choices and the nearby Sailfish Liquors has a lovely selection with a knowledge wine expert, but it just isn’t the same. You step inside Total Wines and almost go into visual overload at the sheer magnitude of offerings. It is a place meant for meandering, for taking your time. If you are in a hurry, you can find a staff member who will direct you to the exact spot you need and of course provide advice. Representatives from various distributors tend to be around with different tastings and naturally there are newsletters and alerts that you can sign up for. It’s not that we don’t appreciate that aspect, it is rather that our reason to go to the store is for the experience. As we wandered the aisles and exressed our pleasure at their opening, one of the staff said they were continuing to expand and a store was planned even closer to us within the next year or two. We were delighted at the idea, but don’t worry Sailfish, we won’t desert you.
If you have a favorite wine story, do share it.