Wine Talk

Snooth User: Lucha Vino

Honoring the new Pope?

Posted by Lucha Vino, Mar 15, 2013.

This past week the cycling pros took part in Paris-Nice, also known as the race to the sun - it starts in Paris and travels South ending in Nice.  The fifth stage started in Chateauneuf du Pape.

The Catholic Church also welcomed a new Pope, which always reminds me of how Chateauneuf du Pape got its name (courtesy of Pope Clement V back in the 1300s).

I welcomed Foxall as a guest blogger on the Lucha Vino site this week to celebrate.  Read all about the showdown between the Columbia Valley Kid and The Pope.

Cheers!

 

Replies

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Reply by outthere, Mar 15, 2013.

Niiice! We have references to Ringside Divas, Sweat, Nolan Ryan, Big Time Wrastling and Jolly Ranchers all in the same review.

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Reply by duncan 906, Mar 15, 2013.

As this is the first time for hundreds of years that there has been more than one living pope perhaps we should honour the occasion with a glass of chateau-neuf-du-pape but then as the new man is from the Argentine he might prefer a wine from that country.Whatever you do don't upset him by mentioning the Falklands!.

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Mar 15, 2013.

I'm not Catholic but the history of the Avignon popes has always fascinated me.  Probably why I buy too many of the CdPs, too.  (I ought to be saving my money for N. Rhones and better Cali Syrah since I enjoy them so much more.)  So I jumped at the chance to guest on Lucha's great blog when I saw the race route.  Plus Lucha's format is so wacky and fun that I love telling my friends about it.  Hope it gets lots of hits. 

Cycling, sadly, is a real mess, although my own experience tells me that it's far from alone in its problems.  I have known and worked out with a number of Olympic athletes in different sports; some of them competed as far back as the '60s.  All but one of them admitted to me that they and all their competitors used PEDs; the only one who didn't was still active in her career until she got caught using "the clear and the cream."  (One of her unwitting trainers was my running partner for a while--that was a tough time.)  But one thing that cycling has over every sport is that a great many of the races wind through some of the best vineyard areas of the world.  Lucha's blog has made me pay attention to how geography and wine go together.  And who hasn't wanted to vicariously climb those mountains on two wheels while enjoying a great wine at the end of the ride?

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Mar 15, 2013.

Are there two living Popes, or one ex-Pope and one Pope?  And about that infallibility doctrine, does that mean that Francis cannot call Benedict for advice? Or that Benedict can't second-guess Francis? 

I can hear it now:  "That's not how I would've done it when I was infallible."

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Reply by duncan 906, Mar 15, 2013.

Good point Foxall.I am sure we will hear lots of comments about the back seat driver over the next couple of years

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Reply by EMark, Mar 15, 2013.

Lucha/Fox, I did read about the CdP/WA slam fest.  Very entertaining and informative.  Thanks a lot.

For what it's worth, I have heard Pope Francis' predecessor referenced as "Pope Emeritus."

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Reply by outthere, Mar 15, 2013.

Well I poured myself a glass of water this morning and left it out. If its CdP this evening when I get home he gets my support! ;)

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Reply by jamelnt, Mar 15, 2013.

Getting back to the wine, I would like to make a toast to Pope Francis with a wine from his own country, Argentina!! I like him even more knowing that his father was an Italian, he was probably raised with a taste for Chianti.

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Reply by jamelnt, Mar 15, 2013.

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Reply by jamelnt, Mar 15, 2013.

Wouldn't this painting (above) make a nice wine label in celebration of the new papacy?

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Mar 17, 2013.

It's interesting that this pope is of Italian lineage but hails from New World wine country.  Certainly suggests that someone will do a tribute bottling, or even two.  I don't know what the restrictions on using a sitting pope's image or name are, but heaven knows (ok, groan now) ol' Clement gets lots of direct and indirect references.  And there's hardly an obscure Saint without a wine named after him.  (Heck, there's even at least one made up saint, St. Supery.) Joseph, Amant (huh?), Estephe, Georges, and on and on. Had it not been for sacramental wine and home wine makers, Prohibition would have wiped out the vineyards in California even more completely.  (I'd credit Passover and Shabbat, but sacramental wines were being made with good wine grapes, kosher wines not so much.)

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Reply by JonDerry, Mar 17, 2013.

Haven't drunk to the new pope yet, though I was going through a pretty strong CdP phase a few weeks ago.

I like the format of the throwdown, seems fair to compare wines at various stages after opening. I wonder how a Coudoulet de Beaucastel would've faired at a similar price point.

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Mar 17, 2013.

That would be an interesting comparison, JD.  Both Beaucastel products, so is the stuff from outside the appellation superior to the lower end of what's inside?  No doubt that one pays for the name with CdP, which is now aggravated by premium cuvees. I'm kind of getting CdP fatigue myself, but with Gigondas prices creeping up, the alternatives are looking less like bargains, too.

Had I known the Aussie was going to win, I would have thrown in an Aussie GSM and a Cal GSM, and the Coudoulet could have been like a manager who takes a cheap shot at the opposing wrestler. 

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Reply by zufrieden, Mar 17, 2013.

We might want to avoid wines from the region perilously close to the palace of the Avignon anit-popes (1309-78) - whether that is Castle No. 9 or any other number.  As for Argentine wine, well, some may drink to Fransiscus I and others not; it depends on how you feel about the recent past.  Some blame the church for not speaking out under the Generals; for me, the jury is still out, so I am willing to raise one to His Holiness (any wine will do) if only for the luck and support he will surely need in years to come.

Being South American carries a political legacy that cannot be underestimated. This is a very controversial subject to some of my friends, so ire cum Domino, Senor Bergoglio.

 

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Mar 17, 2013.

I'm neither Catholic nor religious in any sense, although I am full of wonder as are my evolutionary biologist friends and, I understand, quite a few astronomers who look at the heavens but don't see a Heaven.  I comment on the likelihood of Papal cuvees only because it is likely a profitable idea.

It was the "New Home" of the Pope.  Pont Neuf in Paris was once the "new bridge," but is now oddly enough the oldest.  It's a small source of confusion, but never to the French, that "new" and "nine" are spelled the same.  Of course, so are a great many words, including the word for a line of poetry and worms.  (That would be "vers.") Chateau is more like "really awesome better than a mansion home," just a word that doesn't really translate because it also has attached to it rights and privileges from a feudal time that has passed in most every civilized place.  Well, at least for now--digital chateau, anyone?

Of course, the popes at Avignon didn't start out as the "anti-popes," but were at one point legitimate. 

That said, I think the Holy See is going to make changes or become ever more irrelevant in the lives of "believers."  And, yes, it seems that the last few popes somehow managed to lay low and avoid being offed for standing up to horrible regimes, in at least one case certainly joining the "Youth Movement," which might be excused as youthful naivete, but certainly doesn't give one a great start on the moral high ground.  I took my first visit to the Vatican Museum last year, and I saw plenty of evidence that the popes were aggrandizing themselves and, while technically not owning anything, living lives of great luxury for a very long time.  For signs of that irrelevance, just look at the astoundingly low birth rates in traditionally Catholic countries of Europe--and expect that, as the developing countries of the Catholic world, like Brazil, become long-term wealthy, only the very poor will have large families, and largely because of things unrelated to faith or edicts from the balcony of St. Peter's. 

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Reply by Diego Andrés Díaz, Mar 18, 2013.

 

Let's celebrate the arrival of the new pope like the princes of the church would do. According with this article (http://www.wine-searcher.com/m/2013/03/does-the-vatican-use-wine-searcher) the Vatican ordered 115 bottles of  Papale Primitivo de Manduria 2008, one for each cardinal. 

I just hope that Francis clean the church, take out the pedophile garbage, put a little pragmatism in church's decisions, and Primitivo tastes well with an Argentina "asado"

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Mar 18, 2013.

Excellent post, Diego! Since Primitivo is the same grape as Zinfandel, and Argentine Asado has a strong resemblance to slow-roasting and grilling, which Zin goes with famously, I think this is a good match. 

Of course, wineries named for St. Francis will certainly want to up their profile, too.

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Reply by JonDerry, Mar 18, 2013.

Heard about the 115 bottles myself, couldn't have happened to a better wine shop, real happy for them and hope this helps them get some traction.

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Reply by duncan 906, Mar 18, 2013.

Foxall I agree with you that some previous popes have not really given good examples of Christian behavoir and one of the worst was Pope Urban who inspired the crusades which involved a great deal of bloodshed and a number of atrocities as well as a  mistrust between the Muslim world and the west which has survived to this day.The Sistine chapel in Rome was named in honour of Pope Sixtus who spent the church's money on employing great artists like Michaelangelo,led armies into battle and kept several mnistresses.In the 20th century Pope Pius did not condem the holocaust in spite of knowing exactly what was going onThere are a lot of Popes that the Catholic Church no longer wishes to discuss.

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Reply by jamelnt, Mar 19, 2013.

Looking forward to the Chateau- nuef-de-Pape, I hope it's not as expensive as it sounds!!

Also, a website was mentioned about  vatican wines, willl surely explore that...very interesting!

I would love to know what our local Cardinal is drinking!!

My sister gave me a bottle of St Francis Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, really nice gift!!

There are wines from Umbria and Assisi, they are rich in taste and culture.

The new Pope's parents were Italian immigrants, with all that good wine over there it makes you wonder why they would leave, but that's me, I don't get to far past my patio....I blame the wine.


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