Friday, July 20, 2007

Attack of the asparagus puree

Last night I left the kids with AB and headed out to a wine seminar. A few wine seminars this summer was part of my Mother's Day present. The first two I did "by myself" and tomorrow's, AB and I are attending together and will meet up with a few friends there.

The first one was wine basics essentially. I had a great time getting out with four of our friends to sip wine and listen to a lecture about qualities of wine. There were a few new things I learned at that seminar, but the highlight was hanging with friends and reveling in the fact that AB was home with BOTH kids! (Giggle, giggle...)

Tomorrow's seminar is on pairing BBQ and wine with lunch served (tip off last night that we are having grilled leg of lamb and syrah). We are looking forward to skipping out on naptime and therefore tormenting the babysitter... I mean we are looking forward to good wine, food and company.

Last night's seminar was on sensory evaluation and palate training. What I found really fun last night was that we had a series of "tastes". There was a "base" and then A, B, C, and D. Later we found out that the base was the plain wine and each lettered cup was the base wine with added flavors. For example, on the white side we tasted the base, then A was added sucrose, B was added citric acid, and C was added lemon and orange extracts.

On the "red" side we had the base, then A was added alcohol, B was tannic acid, C was sulfates and D... well I couldn't actually get it to my mouth to taste it, but it was added pureed canned asparagus for bitter. Thanks for turning me off asparagus for oh... maybe the rest of the summer. Truly, it was the floaties that turned me off first, then once I muscled past the floaties, I got a whiff. I could not bring myself to taste it.

Competitor in Fear Factor I am obviously not.

We discussed what we smelled and experienced with each of these wines. At each question of "what did you smell?", except for the asparagus experience, I wanted to raise my hand and say that I smelled the old lady's perfume next to me. I have an overly sensitive nose to aromas. When I was in senior level chemistry class I used to have to be excused daily to go vomit because of the girl's perfume who sat next to me. I was not bulimic as my teacher probably started wondering. Finally I told my mom and she called the school... Jen was moved the next day and after a rough start I actually went on to enjoy and major in chemistry.

I should have gotten up and moved when she sat down... pretended that I knew someone in another row or something. Which brings up another point... I had fun at the class, but truly it is more fun attending with friends. I could hardly turn towards the old lady next to me out of fear of her overwhelming perfume, and on the other side of me was a couple who chatted between them. I tend to have a hard time just picking up conversation with people I don't know, though I am getting better. I actually do enjoy traveling by myself and I never mind going to a restaurant by myself while on travel. So I had no issues with attending by myself as many other people were doing as well. But the fun factor would have gone up had I had someone to chit chat with.

Oh well... they are all off galavanting around on travel and vacations... lucky dogs. They have no idea what they missed with that lovely asparagus puree on top of cheap rose!

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