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Nail on head! Don't tell me anything after you've put my food down; just leave.

43 minutes ago, Sneakeater said:

...after a year of mostly eating and drinking alone alone at home, it REALLY pisses me off.  Has anyone else found they're gotten more irascible over the course of the Quarantine?

Maybe you've just found that you enjoy your own company more than so many fatuous others out there.

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And the other thing about the wine pairings speeches, now that I think of it (cuz I HAVE NO LIFE), is that they contribute to the mystification of wine.  I'm sure the restaurants would argue to the contrary:  that these speeches demystify wine.  But they're wrong.

When they put a plate of food in front of you, do they explain it in detail -- even on a tasting menu, when you didn't choose it and may not know what the menu will include?  Usually, the busser quickly identifies it (often in an accent you can't understand).  Even if you ask the server about a food item on the carte before ordering, you don't get the kind of explanations you get for pours in a wine pairing.

The clear implication is that wine is something that the average diner isn't expected to understand, that must be explained.  Which is bullshit.  You understand wine by drinking it.  That means everyone, from a novice to Dorothy and John.  And to the extent the restaurant is explaining the reasoning behind the pairing, that's more bullshit:  you understand that (or not) by tasting.  Nothing they can tell you can add to the experience.  (I mean, I write about that stuff here -- but this is a food board, not a restaurant where I'm having dinner.)  (When I'm out with friends and it falls to me to choose a wine, I never tell them why I chose it.  I just ask them to drink it and to tell me if they think it complements their food.)

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I did get full descriptions of the food on the plate at Manresa-the-Pop-Up, but I don't recall my server telling me anything about the wines. Of course, I was choosing them myself, so it wasn't a pairing situation. (The Nebbiolo was really good; and the dessert wines had some age at silly low prices. I am starting to think pricing the 1996 Moulin Touchais at $10 BTG is just a mistake, zero mark-up.)

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For sure you don't get the canned speech when you select the wine yourself.  That's why I'm complaining about wine pairings.

Believe me, the explanations of the dishes were nowhere near as windy as the wine explanations.  They never are.

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Better than my yuzu experience a couple of nights ago.  The friend I was out with (who probably cooks with margarine at home) saw yuzu on the menu and asked me what it was.  She then spent the rest of the night making jokes to the server about eating and drinking yuzu, as if it were some big unusual funny thing.

Maybe it's the same place you went.  Maybe the server took a lesson from my friend's behavior.

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This was the same person who elicited that cocktail tirade in the last edition of my newsletter.

She was like, but what if I prefer the taste of storebought lemonade to fresh lemon juice in a cocktail?  I was like, you be you -- but don't expect anyone to ever take your taste seriously.

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