I know this probably never happened to you, but others of us who drink wine have occasionally enjoyed ourselves a wee bit too much. That situation has given rise to a whole slew of morning-after remedies, including the charmingly named “hair of the dog.” Surely, not literal, right? Wrong. The expression originally referred to curing a rabid dog bite by placing hairs of the dog into the bite wound. This was just one example of the ancient medical theory similia similibus curantur (Latin for “like cures like”), which is the basic tenant of homeopathy. It tuns out that using alcohol as a remedy for too much alcohol is a pretty universal practice. So, whether you’re in Rome or Romania, Kenya or Korea, chances are someone will be able to provide just the right “dog hair” should you need it.
Ok all you English majors who love wine, this is for you. The next time you find yourself sniffing a wine that smells like a goat, you can oh-so-casually toss off one of the following which, according to Merriam-Webster dictionary, are all synonyms for unpleasant odors. And yes, one of these bad smell words does mean “bad goaty” as opposed to “bad garlicky” which is also in this list: outstink, nidor, noisome, mephitic, alliaceous, stinkeroo, hircine, malodorous, reekingly, kakidrosis.
It’s called BIG POUR but maybe the wine should be called BIG BOOB. The label shows a blond woman—face obscured by shadow—whose right breast pokes out through a gauzy top, as if the breast itself was reaching for the wine glass. At first, I thought BIG POUR was a bra commercial (don’t over-think this). But then I realized it’s just another cheap-shot objectification of women—this time via a not-cheap cabernet blend ($90). What’s demoralizing is that it’s made by Kelly Fleming, a Napa Valley (female) vintner. Isn’t it #timesup for this sort of thing?
So, last week we asked what well-known woman was named an honorary Artichoke Queen? (I know, it’s a little left field…). Anyway, our favorite answer was Monica Lewinsky. But the right answer was Marilyn Monroe. In 1947 (some sources say 1948) Monroe was given the honorary title by the California town of Castroville, even though as a younger woman she never scored the artichoke crown (apparently, she wasn’t considered beautiful enough).
I’m sure the Champenoise weren’t too crazy about this… In 1919, the American Tobacco Company featured “Piper Heidsieck Chewing Tobacco,” as a way to entice people to chew more tobacco. The tobacco itself was high-quality white Burley tobacco picked ripe. According to the United States Tobacco Journal, “Piper” was unequalled for chewing, and the rare Burley leaf was made even more delicious by blending it to achieve a flavor like Piper Heidsieck Champagne. Apparently if you chewed “Piper” once, you’d never be satisfied with any other tobacco.
It was “nutty” and “clean.” It was organic. It scored a 91 which translated as “excellent.” But it wasn’t a score from Parker, because Parker doesn’t rate pot. But Rachel Burkons does. She’s the Cannabis Editor of Clever Root magazine. And just so you’re up to speed on this, here’s her rating system:
98-100 A True Classic 95-97 Outstanding 91-94 Excellent 88-91 Very Good 84-87 Above Average 80-83 Average
Oh, the 91 in question? It was for Mondo, a dissolving cannabis powder that can be mixed into any drink and which Burkons says is “great for daytime consumption.”
So there you are—staring at a menu item that reads “Prawns Human Taste” (ah: Hunan Taste?) According to Atlas Obscura’s fantastic piece, “Why Menu Translations Go Terribly Wrong,”these aren’t just typos. Translating the names of dishes that exist within a cultural context can be next to impossible. Some entertaining (and delicious) examples:
To the list of all the things you can (but maybe shouldn’t) do while drinking, add this: ax-throwing. According to Tasting Table, two new ax-throwing places will open this year in Boston and ax-throwing bars already exist in Philadelphia and in Canada. If throwing an ax in between sips of pinot noir never crossed your mind, you’re, umm, not alone. But apparently ax-throwing is the new thing. The ax-throwing bars are careful to point out that safety precautions are taken and that an “axepert” supervises every throw. Co-founder of Revolution Axe company, Chris Greeno is quoted in the piece as saying. “If you and your boyfriend or girlfriend walk in for a romantic night of ax throwing, we want to accommodate you.” Good to know.
According to The Drinks Business, this merry marsupial snuck into Cash’s, a Florida liquor store, the day after Thanksgiving, broke a bottle of bourbon then drank the entire contents. The brand was not revealed. Found in a wobbly condition and looking rather pale, the opossum was taken in by the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge and given a Bloody Mary–I mean medical fluids. She has since been released. Many animals are known to appreciate the uplifting effects of an occasional nip including elephants, shrews, and fruit flies.
Okay, something is seriously wacky with the cheese people. First, pink prosecco cheese. Now this: Finlandia cheese company has created an edible cheese wine glass and edible cheese beer glass. At first, I thought, “okay, I’ll get one as a gag gift (really a gag gift) for WineSpeed’s publisher since he likes cheese.” But then I found out each eat-me glass cost $5000. And then I discovered you could only buy the glass on Facebook (beat that op-ed Amazon) and only on one day—last Wednesday. I swear if eat-me glass went viral, I’m in the wrong business. Your complimentary subscription BrieSpeed will arrive next week.