Monday, October 5, 2009

Not a Leg To Stand On

Have you ever felt that you have absolutely no support whatsoever?
Years and years ago on the ranch of my childhood a man claiming to be a distant or shirt tail family cousin arrived to tell my father of his plan to fill the Grand Canyon with water and then freeze the whole thing. He would then corner the ice market. His plan involved a shit load of refrigerators with the doors open, as I recall. Judging from my father's expression, it was clear that the guy's presentation did not win the endorsement or support of my father. In other words, the guy's logic left him without a leg to stand on.
No offense to those of us truly lacking actual legs on which to stand. I'm making a point here.
A good wine always has a leg to stand on.
That's my point.
Ever notice anyone swirl the wine in their glass? Ever done it yourself? No, I'm not talking about swirling the wine with the straw you've been using or even shaking up the box really well. I'm talking about gently swirling the wine, raising it towards the light, and watching the wine's legs appear on the glass. Legs indicate the wine's quality. The more legs, the higher the quality.
The legs actually are more a factor of physics than vineyard.
Wine is a mixture of alcohol and water. Alcohol has a faster evaporation rate and a lower surface tension than water, effectively forcing the alcohol to evaporate at a faster rate. This allows the water's surface tension and concentration to increase, pushing the legs up the glass until the surface tension pushes the water into beads. Finally, gravity forces the liquid to tear down the glass in an almost magical streak.
Still and all, swirling the wine around in your glass is a really fun thing to do and it impresses the hell out of your friends who are still shooting their straw wrappers at each other.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It's fun to swirl wine around in a glass as much fun as shooting straw papers. I enjoy both!