Monday, December 2, 2013

The HoseMaster's Letter to Santa 2013

I've been writing an annual letter to Santa Claus since I was old enough to write. The first letter I wrote I was in high school, and I asked Santa for "hair down there." Life has come full circle, and now I need to ask for "hair up top." My 2013 Letter to Santa appears over in Dickens country, at Tim Atkin's Louis Roederer Award Winning Site. I hope that you'll jump in your magic sleigh and go there to read it. It's hard for me to believe, but this completes my first year writing for Tim Atkin MW. It has been a great pleasure, and Tim's site has given me a kind of exposure that I would probably never have gotten on my own. So, thank you, Tim. And God Bless Us, every one!

Feel free to leave a gift of language over at Tim's site, comments there are much appreciated, or, of course, you can wrap them up tastefully, slide down my chimney, and leave them under my Christmas tree here. Gift cards and cash much appreciated.

Tim Atkin MW


Samantha Dugan said...

Ron My Love,
I am crushed Babe. I thought I knew just what you wanted. What you've been craving and secretly trying to communicate to me through innuendo. Can't believe I got it so wrong. Now what am I going to do with this Blinky Gray Fat Head?!
Oh well, I can't give you any of the things on your Santa list but I can offer my paltry loyalty and undying love. I love you!

Charlie Olken said...

I object to the ban on hedonistic--not that I ever use it, but I do come across so many wines that offer no hedonistic pleasure. Perhaps, instead of the Asimov equation of savory and whatever else it was he suggested as the other category, we could simply grade wines into hedonistic and non-hedonistic.

As for Gordon Ramsay, didn't he die ages ago, like Colicchio and Bobby Flay and all those other people who are trying to tell us how well they can cook dishes we could never even conceive.

Oh, and Happy Hanukah. I know its almost over, and I hope you did not miss it.

Ron Washam, HMW said...

My Gorgeous Samantha,
Your loyalty is far from paltry. This time of year it's more like spruce tree.

Is that the inflatable Blinky? Oh, that would be great. Though I'd rather unwrap you Christmas morning.

I did miss Hanukah. By the way, are kosher wines authentic, or natural, or something Yiddish?

I don't know if Ramsay is dead or not, but I know Santa knows where to find him. Maybe I can get Santa to be my annual hit man. Ho Ho Ho

The Sommeliere said...

Ron,the hair "down there" vs the hair on head cracked me up, but it's what I have come to expect!

Hanukkah got lost in Thanksgivmukkah, which to my mind was no great loss.

Apologies to my co-religionists, because the Hanukkah presents are probably already forgotten and now Jewish kids will start whining piteously at Christmas for gifts.

To be perfectly honest, Hanukkah became a big deal to mollify the whiners who wanted gifts at XMas.

Regarding kosher wines: There has been a huge increase in quality/quantity of kosher wine. Jeff Morgan makes a great Cali/Bdx called Covenant (get it?) Hagafen
(one of my wine students thought it was an Irish name and pronounced it
Haag a fen) makes good quality kosher wines and some of the kosher stuff coming out of Israel is good enough for me to drink!

I believe Domaine du Castel's Grand Vin (a Bdx blend) is a winner. Yarden makes some very good Cab/Merlot etc. And surprisingly,
makes a kosher cuvee.

This may be sacrilege but I never REALLY understood the whole kosher thing. Some very orthodox wineries won't even allow the Jewish owner to touch his/her wine because they are not Sabbath observers and do not keep strictly kosher. That seems like overkill to me but whaddya whaddya...

Charlie, please chime in here.

Charlie Olken said...

I'm supposed to chime in on Kosher wines? What do I look like? Shecky Greene?

Ron Washam, HMW said...

Marlene Darling,
I'm in way over my head in any discussion that involves the Jewish faith. I do know that when it comes to kosher, there's kosher, kosher for Passover, and kosher for Barbra Streisand's birthday. After that, I'm totally ignorant.

But I've missed you.

One of the very few times I was starstruck working as a sommelier, in a restaurant where I met just about every big star in Hollywood, was when I walked up to a table on night and realized the old guy sort of schlumped in his seat, with big black glasses on, was the great Shecky Greene. I have a fondness for those old Borscht Belt comics, from Buddy Hackett to Myron Cohen to Mel Brooks and on to Shecky. Glad to have you drop his name.

Unknown said...

Kill Gordon Ramsey?? Good idea.. that way we won't get sued when we steal his act for Hell's Tasting Room... remember I want a half mil an episode... how about a shiny new cow bell for X-mas?? great stuff Ron.. keep the laffs coming in the new year...

Ron Washam, HMW said...

I must say I like the concept of Hell's Tasting Room, inevitably located somewhere along Napa's Highway 29. Maybe start an actually winery named Hell. Then it would be Hell's Tasting Room. Hell, that's a good idea.

The Sommeliere said...

Ron dearest, I am (close to) totally ignorant on kosher as well!

Charlie, I dunno, whaddya look like?
And who is Shecky Greene? He is probably before my time...

Unknown said...

I hate to get this train back on the rails, but I will say that pinot noir pairs wonderfully with latkas.

Charlie Olken said...

But Gabe, when you add the required apple sauce and sour cream, I think a high-acid, 1.5% RS Riesling becomes my choice.

Now, if you are serving the latkes with a tender, oven-braised brisket, then I would have to serve both PN and Riesling.

Hey, Marlene.

Ron Washam, HMW said...

I thought latka was the Andy Kaufman character on "Taxi."

Marlene Darling,
That you don't know Shecky Greene is a terrible gap in your education. To this day, if you want to name a really old school, Vaudevillian-type comedian for a comedy skit, you name him "Shecky." Shecky was, as they say in the show biz world of talk shows, Great Panel.

Though he sucked with Pinot Noir.

And he's still alive! Man, I hope he reads this.

The Sommeliere said...

Ron, you are right! I guess I spent too much time getting edumacated with an MA in Linguistics, an MBA in Marketing/Finance and a somm certificate.

Shecky Greene is 86 years old and reading about him was a treat. Apparently, he was a Catskill star.
My family was too poor to take vacays in the Catskills, so...

Ron Washam, HMW said...

Marlene Darling,
My best friend and I would often talk about the great old comics of yesteryear, hard working guys who did nothing but schtick, the grand old dinosaurs of the comedy biz. Shecky Greene, Jan Murray, Freddie Roman, Corbett Monica, Myron Cohen, Henny Youngman, Allen and Rossi, Charlie Callas... I learned a lot about joke writing just listening to all those guys. So meeting Shecky! Wow. I'm sure there's some YouTube of him. Maybe I'll go look.

Love you.

The Sommeliere said...

Ron, love you and miss you.
This may shed some light on the whole
kosher thang!