Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Tired of hairy chest contests? Might I suggest...

French wine and French gastronomy are often en...Image via Wikipedia

In Vancouver we are currently in the midst of a insane heat wave. It's about 5,000 degrees out right now and if I didn't think I'd be electrocuted, I'd be writing this from the comfort of my bathtub. One thing that does help, though, is the glass of cold, local chenin blanc I have at my side. I love wine and I love cruising.

No surprise, then, that one of my favourite things to do on cruises is to go to the wine tastings or seminars. They're fun: you get to drink some wine, maybe learn something new and meet other people. It's a great way to break up a sea day and come in from the sun for a spell.

If you've wondered about going to one but thought it might be too stuffy, I can tell you from my experience they're anything but. There's a bit of swirling and a whole lot of swilling but no spitting - no worries about dribbling red wine down your white shirt. They are informative if you choose to listen rather than quickly work your way through the wine in front of you. But the information is delivered in a fun, relaxed way. I've been to several and I almost always learn something new each time.

The wine samplings are decent - whites, reds and maybe a dessert wine. Princess has two wine tastings: one is a basic one and another features more higher end wines and champagne. You pay a bit more but probably the only time I'll ever be able to try Opus One!

A cynic would say they're just trying to sell more dinner table wine but so be it. It's fun, informative, and a good way to waste away an hour or so, all for the price of a couple of glasses of wine. If you're tired of the usual poolside shenanigans, try one on your next cruise. Maybe we'll be table mates.

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