11/25/08 – A.W.A. (annoying wine acronyms)

By Jesse on November 24, 2008

Black Friday is nearly upon us — and so, therefore, is the official start of the holiday shopping season. Unfortunately, for many people, this period isn’t always the happy, joyous time that was originally intended by Mary and Joseph. Instead, it’s become a frenzied and stressful race to a high-stakes finish, one that can easily leave even the most level-headed Wino reaching for a glass of something strong.

Ah, wine: the opiate of all ills. Its calming, rejuvenating presence may be just what the doctor ordered for your various holiday-related stresses. For some, however, wine itself continues to be a source of stress, due to the inherent complexity that can also make it so much fun. We at the Young Winos always strive to de-mystify wine in whatever way we can, and this week, we unwrap yet one more of wine’s many layers of complexity by taking a close look at the various acronyms that we encounter in our daily interactions with wine. Whether you’re looking for a gift for a Wino friend, or seeking out that perfect bottle for your holiday table, rest assured that no acronym will continue to baffle you after Tuesday’s exegesis.

For this tasting, feel free to bring any bottle that you think exemplifies one of the acronyms we frequently see associated with wine — and be prepared to explain that acronym (and its significance) to the group. For example, I’ll be bringing a GSM. (No, that doesn’t mean “global system for mobile communications,” the phrase most frequently associated with “GSM,” according to Google. Nor am I referring to the “Gay Skinhead Movement,” which also turned up in my Google search.) In wine, “GSM” means “Grenache / Syrah / Mourvedre,” and refers to any wine made up of a blend of those three varietals made famous in the southern Rhône Valley.

There are tons of acronyms to choose from… which is part of the problem. How can a beginner Wino possibly keep all those letters straight? We’ll be taking a hands-on approach to learning this week, in the hope that actually drinking a bottle somehow related to the acronym in question might trigger some degree of increased memory retention. Some potential acronyms include:


…and there are many more!

Don’t think that your bottle actually needs to have one of these acronyms printed on the label (in many cases, that would never happen). Rather, just bring any wine that you think might serve as a nice example of an acronym you’ve encountered during your boozing, and be ready to explain what it means.

We’ll be meeting at Shilpa’s place in Santa Monica. The new RSVP system functions like this: if you want in, you click on this link and tell me so (don’t forget your full name, e-mail address, and a cute message conveying to me your intentions). Priority is given to long-term members but seats are also reserved at each and every meeting for new people. If you’re denied entry due to a meeting exceeding capacity, don’t worry — you’ll be at the top of the list the next week.

Once you’ve received your confirmation e-mail, go out and find yourself a relevant bottle of wine (or just grab a crisp $10 bill). I look forward to seeing a bunch of you crazy kids on Tuesday at 9pm.