An Introduction – Ah Chabernet!
The flight attendant asked my darling wife for her wine selection of either Chardonnay or Cabernet, and she chose the Cab. When her glass was empty, she asked the attendant for another glass of Chabernet.
So, welcome to our website – where the Chabernet flows like beer.
In nearly all our books on grape culture I notice another defect, especially in those published in the East; it is, that they contain a great deal of good advice about grape culture, but very little about wine-making, and the treatment of wine in the cellar. For us here at the West this is an all-important point, and even our Eastern friends, if they continue to plant grapes at the rate they have done for the last few years, will soon glut the market, and will be forced to make them into wine.
I shall therefore try to give such simple instructions about wine-making and its management as will enable every one to make a good saleable and drinkable wine, better than nine-tenths of the foreign wines, which are now sold at two to three dollars per bottle. I firmly believe that this continent is destined to be the greatest wine-producing country in the world; and that the time is not far distant when wine, the most wholesome and purest of all stimulating drinks, will be within the reach of the common laborer, and take the place of the noxious and poisonous liquors which are now the curse of so many of our laboring men, and have blighted the happiness of so many homes.
Pure light wine I consider the best temperance agent; but as long as bad whisky and brandy continue to be the common drink of its citizens we can not hope to accomplish a thorough reform; for human nature seems to crave and need a stimulant. Let us then try to supply the most innocent and healthy one, the exhilarating juice of the grape.
–George Husman, from The Cultivation of the Native Grape and Manufacture of American Wines.
If there is anything less useful than a parody of an informative resource, I have not found it. But in searching for good information regarding the industry of the grape I have found only a dearth of serious literature. All seems but a parody of more distinguished literature from a bygone era.
We communicate now in the barest of terms with little art for sophistication. Why is it that books written so long ago have a charming quality about their language, whilst the pages printed today seem all but torn from the fabric of illiteracy?
We have lost not the art nor the skill of writing, but rather the passion for communicating our hearts on the most mundane of topics, be they the variation in species of household cat or the quality and quantity of American wines.
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