When the first contact with reality hits me, after I stretch my body and drink my tea, I start the following venture: I discover five things around me (laptop, lamp, book, phone, lamp bulb), I identify the source of four different noises (bus, washing machine, vacuum cleaner – my neighbours are early risers- , water in the pipes), I challenge my nose to find three kinds of scents (the mint leaves, the perfume traces still persisting in the room, the balm left in the texture of the clothes), I detect two tastes (toothpaste, mint) and I feel something (the texture of the blanket). It’s a simple technique to become present, that wine lovers practice, perhaps without even realising it.
And this is because a good glass of wine always teaches you to enjoy what you have in front of you, placing you in the “here and now”. And, of course, the inexistent cell phone signal in the wine cellar will teach you one of the most useful lessons. Never do things by halves. I always remember not eating by halves, not listening by halves, not answering by halves, nor checking my social media profile by halves.
Pasteur said that we find more philosophy in a bottle of wine than in any book in the world. The wine? It should not be merely drunk, it should be savoured.
Refined taste, balanced acidity, green apple and lemon, herbs and elder notes in a combination of floral and grapefruit flavours. Ana, Sauvignon Blanc, a 12.50%, wine which comforts me during autumn evenings, at the heart of Transylvania, where it seems to show me a whole universe.
I am in Weinland (Wine Country, which includes the wine cellars of Alba and Târnave, here in Romania) in my corner of heaven, in search of one of the largest producers of controlled origin wine in the area who has been making “healthy” investments here over the last ten years, of tens of millions euros. I’m talking about Jidvei, which currently has a cultivated area of about 2,500 hectares of vines besides the online store. In the Târnave vineyard there are 467 hectares of Sauvignon Blanc, making it the largest plantation of this kind in the entire Europe which belongs to a single producer.
In this “white wine sanctuary”, in the Bethlen-Haller Castle, also known as the Jidvei Castle, at Cetatea de Baltă, I enjoy a fabulous landscape. It is a Group A historic monument, which often receives wine lovers. It was completely restored by the Necşulescu family, who own the Jidvei vineyards; 80% of its visitors are foreigners.
Sometimes the wine world intimidates me. I have often wanted to talk about this “magic liqueur” as if I knew what I was talking about, just as Ioan Buia, the PhD specialist in chemistry of Jidvei, tells me now about the entire “path” of the grape, from the cluster till its arrival in these elongated glass which I try to grip with “elegance” between two fingers. A gentleman like an encyclopaedia, with a warm voice, a gentle look giving you the feeling that everything in the world is “so simple,” but beyond all that there is a torment, a passion.
* I recommend drinking alcohol with moderation.