The anger & frustration I want to release in writing about the living cultural contradictions I inhabit add to & harden the very blockage in front of itself...
I don't know enough about wine-- will I ever?
But the wines that seem most appropiate to the near-year-long humid heat of Puerto Rico & our somewhat extreme cuisine elements (--such as raw seafood ceviches & cool, marinated root vegetable salad 'escabeches' on the one hand, long-stewed or roasted meats & rice-based 'asopaos'
on the other; deep-fried dishes & fast food somewhere in between...)
-- are the ones which oxidize or otherwise deteriorate and age prematurely in the inadequately, stingily climatized warehouses of the big distributors on the island...
I just drank a bottle of Guigal's 1998 Condrieu over the last three days. As I finished it up today, my sense-memory & metaphor 'fichier' finally meshed & I thought there was an interesting, complex but (clashing) umm-- unfocused? disjointed? --nose & palate of bitter orange, orange blossoms & something like muskmelon or cantaloupe adding rich but slightly sour, & to this half-trained palate, somewhat oxidized notes.
It's funny & interesting-- & somewhat heartening-- that the wine cohered in a more definite, characterful manner after a few days open in the refrigerator. To try to set off or bring out characteristics & sensory associations, I've been mostly pairing it with variants on fairly Italianate cannellini with escarole stews-- tonight more bitter chicory than the last of the escarole, some squash & wine-soaked shiitake & wood ears for balance & chicken sausage with basil & pignoli for substance-- ah, & a few rice-flour rotini added in for fill at the last minute.
I soaked the mushrooms in some of Jean-Luc Colombo's 2001 'La Belle de Mai' St. Péray-- 100% Rousanne, I believe. This baby
is falling apart somewhat differently...
(to be continued, again, bien entendu!)