Can Wine Help – Happy Easter to Connoisseur readers from Giles MacDonogh

Written by Giles MacDonogh

Giles MacDonogh
Writer, Historian and Renaissance man

Can Wine Help – Happy Easter to Connoisseur readers from Giles MacDonogh

Christ has risen in one of the bleakest years in modern times. In the Ukraine, Russia threatens to drag NATO into the first major international conflict since the end of the Second World War, and there are plenty of localised wars to occupy our thoughts, night and day. Meanwhile unscrupulous chancers, charlatan politicians queue up to advocate radical solutions in countries where the traditional voice of liberalism has become hoarse in its attempts to preserve democracy from its detractors. Can democracy survive this onslaught? This is certainly the most dangerous time since the end of the Cold War, and it might well be the worst time to be alive since 1945.
Can wine help? Maybe it can make us forget, but that is hardly a realistic solution to our problems. For many of us, wine is a fundamental part of our culture, the ‘blood of Christ’ grafted onto the sunny Mediterranean world which, with its rolling hills and vineyards, took its message to so many far-flung parts of the world. Wine, be it in Argentina, Australia, South Africa or the United States, all imitates a Mediterranean model. With time, wine became a message of peace and enjoyment, the ultimate act of civilisation: sitting around a table, enjoying the company of friends, good food and wine.
But even these simple pleasures are threatened. Here in Britain the lunacy of Brexit together with a clapped-out and desperate government searching frantically for cash, has not only resulted in many wines being no longer shipped to these shores, it also means that wine has become madly expensive at a time when we struggle to pay for food and heat. To a lesser extent, the same is true on the European Mainland, and lifestyle choices have dictated that even in France – to many of the home of wine – few people now drink wine on a regular basis. In Bordeaux (Bordeaux, a name that simply shouts for wine), many hard-strapped growers have successfully petitioned to grub up their vines and plant other crops.  As they point out, for every expensive classed growth, there are hundreds, perhaps thousands of little wines which sell for just a few centimes a litre. For most of them, there is no longer any money in wine.
So now the Lenten fast has drawn to a close, let us raise a glass or two to wine.
Let  the enjoyment of wine, food and amicable society remain close by us in this increasingly uncertain world, let that be our Easter message.

Emmaus (Latin: Emmaus; is a town mentioned in the Gospel of Luke of the New Testament. Luke reports that Jesus appeared, after his death and resurrection, before two of his disciples while they were walking on the road to Emmaus.Although its geographical identification is not certain, several locations have been suggested throughout history, chiefly Imwas and Al-Qubeiba, both in the West Bank. It is known only that it was connected by a road to Jerusalem

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Giles MacDonogh

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