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Do You Go Through Good Wine Withdrawal?

Just curious. For the past few years I have found that if I go a few weeks without drinking serious wine, I get moody and a true craving for it -- much the same way I would crave a cigarette when I used to smoke. (Of course, ideally I would drink serious wine several times per week, but budget and caloric intake dictate otherwise...)

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  1. Absolutely. While my wife was pregnant, I've never drank less wine in my life and now I'm left with a serious storage issue since I wasn't able to temper my purchases ;)

    Now, that she can drink (a little) it's better, but instead of enjoying a bottle or two during the week, I open bottles on the weekend.

    1. heheheheh! We try not to let that happen...

      1. Oh, I do, absolutely.

        After a couple of weeks without, it's like a craving, and I will not be denied.

        1 Reply
              1. re: souvenir

                I meant a wine that you drink not just becaus you are hangin' out, but one that you drink to really savor and ponder.

                It is hard to define exactly -- sort of like pornography, I know it when I taste it. Kim Crawford SB is not, Silex and Pur Sang are. Guigal Cotes du Rhone is not, Vieux DonJon CdP is. Etc...

                1. re: whiner

                  Good analogy, whiner. Silex is DEFINITELY serious wine. Serious pricetag, too... :) To answer the question, absolutely. I have to spank my own hand from time to time to keep from reaching for bottles that aren't ready to drink yet just so I can get my fix...

                  1. re: whiner

                    Yes, nice analogy especially because I love Pur Sang. Have to find me some Silex now...

                    1. re: SteveG

                      SteveG, Pigloader, and whiner: May I recommend the Cotat cousins to you? Both Fran├žois and Pascal are old-school Sancerre that produce wines with length and depth on par with Didier Dag's, but at half the price (okay, still pricey). These are some of the few SBs that age wonderfully for decades. Add a piece of aged Crottin De Chavignol, and you've got a magic combination with huge hedonistic value.

                  1. re: pinotho

                    This question definitely resonates with me. Lately my wife and I have cut back our wine consumption, primarily for financial reasons but also for health considerations (let's just say we were drinking more than the recommended 1-2 glasses per night).

                    I have found that, over time, my wine tastes have become more expensive. Therefore, I drink better quality wine less often. But I sure wish I could afford to drink the wines I like best ALL THE TIME.

                  2. Truth be told, I probably experience good beer withdrawal more than good wine withdrawal. There could be two reasons for this : 1) I drink good/serious wine frequently enough to never experience withdrawal, or 2) I find something to like about nearly all the wines I drink, and steer clear of those I know I won't like.

                    A story related to the beer comment. When my wife and I were in the Pfalz a couple years back, we visit wine producers, ate at weinstuben, etc. On our last night there, before flying home the next day, I said, "Let's just go out for beer tonight. I'm not going to spend all this time in Germany and not have at least one beer."

                    1. I am currently in a difficult situation. For various reasons, I am not tolerating alcohol at all, and have significantly cut back on wine consumption. But like you, I am seriously craving it. So although I have the desire to drink some serious wine, I am also saddened that I can't appreciate the quality of the wine, and have a conflicting desire to not drink (pearls before swine). I'm reading a lot of wine literature as a way of living vicariously.

                      I have plans to attend a couple of nice wine tasting events in the next few weeks, and hope I'll be able to at least enjoy some tastes. My spicy tolerance appears to be improving, and I'm hoping the wine tolerance will also improve quickly.

                      So carpe diem, fellow wine drinkers! Go, open that serious wonderful wine. Drink, enjoy. You don't know what tomorrow brings, life is too short to drink bad wine.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: moh

                        I get the withdrawals when I'm trying to be 'good' and keep my diet/calories in check. It seems like whenever I'm trying to be 'good' I want wine more!

                      2. Actually, I'd like for this to happen. Fortunately, or unfortunately, depending on how one looks at it, we travel too much and on too regualr a basis. Many of these meals are "events" for our guests, so I am charged with the wine selections. I probably do "serious wines," 30 weeks, per year. There is good, but there is bad with this. I get serious wines, but then I'd rather be sleeping in my own bed. There IS a price to pay. I kinda' enjoy having our "house wines," for 6 days running! OK, crocodile tears, but, like I said, there is a price.

                        Besides, I love to dredge a "great bottle" from the cellar, and share it with my wife - just the two of us. Next, do the same, at my home, with great friends.

                        If I ever get to the withdrawal state, I'll let you know how I cope.


                        6 Replies
                        1. re: Bill Hunt

                          Bill, I just want you to know that I'm always willing to share your personal pain and take one for the team. It's a short, cheap flight from SF to Phoenix.

                          1. re: maria lorraine

                            We have got to do something about that. I don't care if it's on my ground, or yours - just needs to happen.

                            I'd have called you last week, as we were in SF, but flew in in the PM, hit Michael Mina's, and flew to DC the next AM. Return trip, we were at the RCC at SFO for only 4 hours, and I didn't think I could entice anyone into driving out of the city for 4 hours.

                            Wife was there on Sunday, but only in - give presentation-out. Not a second of time. Even the security lines went quickly.

                            Right now, I'm drinking some of my good stuff, 'cause I can't fit it into the cellar! I need help badly, I tell you, badly!!


                            1. re: Bill Hunt

                              RCC at SFO? I noticed a wine bar that looked like it might not be terrible that's across from the Buena Vista bar, which IS terrible. It was close to the domestic united gates.

                              1. re: SteveG

                                Great! I do not know the Buena Vista bar, but will find it. I have seen a wine shop on the UAL concourse, but have not stopped in. The RCC at SFO has a horrible wine selection, BTW. Every UAL survey, that asks for input, guess what they hear - "add premium wines, good glassware, and charge me whatever it takes."

                                At SeaTac, we hit the RCC and were wow'ed with the wine selection. They had probably 15 local WA/OR wines! I was in heaven. Though it was early AM, I opened the bar and got started. This was one of the first times, that I wish my plane had been delayed by a couple of hours. Prices were at, or maybe even cheaper, than SFO for Mondavi's fourth level wines.

                                LHR International First Lounge *used* to have a great wine selection, at no charge. Some medium producer Chablis, Montrachet, and some decent red Burgs and Bdx. Not so anymore. Seems the the UK has gone bonkers for cheap OZ swill. Go figure.

                                Thanks so much for the tip. The RCC can just wait now.

                                Off-topic: we've also had decent breakfasts and lunches at the Yankee Pier, just up from the UAL concourse. For airport food, it's very good.


                                1. re: Bill Hunt

                                  Ahh, red carpet club.

                                  This place was mainly a wine shop, but I noticed they had a little counter where you could taste a few things, and the price per glass seemed like it barely had an airport premium. You aren't going to discover anything there, but at least it'll be better than UAL's selections.

                                  I got a kick out of seeing a few "cult" wines for sale there, that were really only cult wines half a decade ago. I'm sure the people who bought them then have discovered they fall apart with age and aren't interested in the new vintages.

                                  So far my favorite airport wine bar was one in Portland OR (PDX), before you check in for security. I had a half dozen local oysters and a glass of local riesling, both of which I would have happily eaten outside of an airport. Since it's in sight of the security apparatus, you can pop out periodically to make sure no line is forming. It was next to a big fake Japanese restaurant.

                                  Edited to add, I googled the PDX options and it looks like "Rose City Cafe" includes a sushi bar and expanded to add a wine bar, which must be the place because I remember noticing my oysters coming from next door in the sushi bar.

                                  1. re: SteveG

                                    I will be on the lookout. How was the RCC (if you flew UAL) at PDX? I would hope that they were at a similar level, or maybe even better, if possible, to SeaTac? To me, so far, that is the paradigm of how it can be. To me, I like the option of paying more, but having a good selection of wines. Heck, when I'm sitting around some airport, I want decent wines, without having to leave the RCC, or going back through security.

                                    Thanks for the update. Now if I could only get UAL to take my comments seriously, at ORD, IAD, SFO, LAX, DEN and LHR, as these are the spots we seem to spend far too much time in.


                        2. I don't go through any withdrawls, but I sure do sit back, relax and take notice when I get to have serious wine and I never take it forgranted. Last night I went to a wine dinner and the host of the winery started the evening off by toasting the vineyard workers, it was a lovely way to start the evening, to think of all the time and patience and attention that goes into high end wine.