Dr. Booze!!! I forgot today was valentineís day!!! I can’t get a dinner reservation and the roses are sold out!! I forgot her birthday last year. If I miss this one I may be sleeping the car again.
You’re my last hope!!! Help!!!
– Erring in Esterhazy
Although you have behaved like an oaf, all is not lost.
Here’s something you need to understand about every man woman and child in the universe. Ogden Nash said “candy is dandy but liquor is quicker,” but why limit yourself to a single tactic? The road to the love is paved with chocolate and alcohol.
Firstly buy a mixed bouquet from the grocery store. Flowers always work on everyone. Who doesn’t melt when given flowers? This will look a bit bad as she’ll be expecting roses but relax, you will fetch her roses of a different sort. (Feel free to steal this line.)
Next offer some bubbly to break the ice. I’m rather fond at the moment of Henry of Pelham’s Cuvee Catherine Carte Blanche at the moment, a blanc de blanc (i.e. made from 100 per cent Chardonnay) but I expect it’s too late to get a case delivered now. Let this be a lesson to you! Always keep a half dozen bottles of bubbly in the basement for emergencies.
They make absolutely stunning bubbly in Ontario, and of course it plays to the home crowd. The Carte Blanche has a lovely nose of citrus with a touch of yeast and a delicate palate that’s complex with lovely freshness and flavours of peach and lemon, and just a hint of grapefruit on the finish. I bought my Holiday bubbly this year from Henry of Pelham, and best of all they shipped the cases directly to my door! No fuss no muss no bother! I’m still working on the last of my Cuvee Catherine rosé.
In your particular case hurry down to the local liquor store and buy a bottle of champagne. Make sure you spend at least $50. She WILL check on you, and it may save further turmoil in a marriage that is likely to be a bit on the stormy side unless you stop playing World of Warcraft and start paying attention.
If you aren’t broke, I’d suggest Pol Roger Brut Rosé. I haven’t met very many people who refuse a glass of champagne and the Pol Roger Brut looks like love in a glass. There are times when even I give up my beloved Ontario bubbles for the French stuff, and usually it is emergencies like this.
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The 2004 smells slightly of strawberry and toast with a nice citrus note. The bead is tremendously fine, but the texture is opulent with a long finish. If this isn’t good enough to get you to at least sleeping on to the couch, then good luck with your Tee-totalling Methodist future.
Next open some decent chocolate. Buy several bars. Buy enough that neither of you will be hungry.
Tonight you will be fueled by love and the occasional pinch of cocoa! I’m a fan of Lindt Dark chocolate with orange. However many women lean to the milk chocolate side of life. Buy a selection if you haven’t noticed which bar she favours. (I suggest you get this brand tattooed on your inner arm for next time. I get the feeling you need all the cue cards you can get.)
Now for the piece de resistance! With aplomb of James Bond, you hand the woman of your dreams (and if you keep up this kind of habit, you’ll never have to worry about her evil twin sister who inhabits your nightmares) a bottle of Croft Pink Port.
People say all sorts of absurd things about Port that usually involve some kind of theoretical dislike. This is the same as people’s theoretical dislike of chocolate. In this case you can tell her the genius in the Spectator Tribune – I am he, in case you’re wondering – said this is the best thing to have with chocolate, barring vintage port (I recommend the ’94 and ’07 and Cockburn LBV port which is another fine wine aimed squarely at chocoholics.)
Pink Port is great over ice in a generous wine glass. I usually drink it straight up, and bung it into the now empty wine bucket, replacing now empty bottle of bubbly.
You will find once you’ve opened a decent bottle of red port (tawny is for nuts and cheese) there is nothing quite so fine as chocolate. At this point her heart should be warmed up if not completely melted. I would start nibbling on her ear lobe and go from there.
One more thing: Pink Port is tremendously fresh and fruity when cold and is one of the all time best cocktail bases I’ve ever come across. I strongly recommend saving the cocktail recipe brochure attached to the neck and making them. Once you and your love are ready are ready for refreshments before commencing round 2 of a Valentine Day to remember, may I suggest you give the Sidecar a try m’sieur?
Croft Pink Port. **** $18
Cockburn LBV 2007. **** $25
Cuvee Catherine 2007 Carte Blanche. *****
Pol Roger Rose, 2004. ***** $75
Lindt Excellence Orange Intense $3.99
James Romanow writes about Wine and all things Boozy for the Spectator Tribune. Follow him @drbooze
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