I always think that winter is a great time to be studying in a university. The cooler weather is conducive to reading by the fire or finding a comfortable nook in the library to complete assignments. It is a cozy and creative time – marked by Winter Solstice (Dec. 21) and the first day of spring on March 20.
It is also a beautiful and introspective time in California wine country. The crowds are gone and it is possible to visit a winery tasting room and receive lots of one-on-one attention. The vineyards are bereft of leaves and so it is possible to see the beautiful sculptures the naked branches create. Recently I visited a winery in Napa that is varnishing old vines and selling them in the tasting room as works of art – they really are!
In celebration of this beautiful winter season, I found a quote by Frenchman, Pierre Motin, which describes the warmth which wine can bring (drunk in moderation):
Bacchus we thank who gave us wine,
Which warms the blood within our veins;
That nectar is itself divine.
The man who drinks not, yet attains
By godly grace to human rank
Would be an angel if he drank.
Pierre Motin, French drinking song