January 2, 2012 2 comments Articles & Reviews, By Jonathan Cristaldi

Out With the Old [World], in with the New [World]

"The Idea of Order at Key West" by Wallace Stevens

On this beautiful sunny second day of the year Twenty Twelve, I pause momentarily to savor my last sip of Old World wine. That’s right: I’m never drinking another drop of Old World wine again. Ever. Said Jonny Cigar, to no one there.

The sun here in New York is beating down a dry heat over this lovely city abounding with parks, vineyards, orange orchards, apple orchards, plum orchards, walnut trees, banana trees and beaches that expose aqua blue ocean surfs.

Perhaps it is Twenty Twelve or possibly I’m reminiscing of Old New York, long before the Indians inhabited its hills and the pilgrims plundered the Indians. Longer even before New York looked like New York – when it was a tropical paradise millions and millions of years ago, part of Eurasia or Europa. I remember those days fondly, ya know?

The photo of Steven’s poem is merely to suggest that I do not understand Inhuman or the veritable Ocean, but feel confident enough to proclaim that:

Old World wine is silly, okay?

New World wine is not silly. It’s a combination of all these words: Delicious, delightful, delovely, delirious, delectable, disposable, deplorable and at times existential.

That’s right folks, you heard it here first: Out with the Old, and in with the New [wines].

Never, ever, as long as you all shall live will I ever drink another New Old World wine again. Someone has to take a stand, ya know? It’s a new year and already resolutions are alive with promises like this one from Matt Lewis (@brooklynbaker): “wine budget must be less than food budget this year.”

That line is enough to give me a small self-induced heart attack. In retaliation of nothing in particular, I’m declaring war on Old World wines and with good reason.

Good Reason(s):

  • Many Old World Wines are confusing.
  • Many Old World Wines smell like a barn floor or horse that’s been i’th’rain too long methinks.
  • Many Old World Wines are trying to be like New World Wines.
  • I can’t afford the Old World Wines I might like to try – might!
  • I can’t speak the language of many Old World Wines and hence, cannot understand them.
  • The market for well known Old World Wines is competitive and I’m not all that competitive unless we’re talking iPhone Pool and my wife. Then, it’s “go time.”

Okay. I’ll probably drink a couple Old World Wines at some point in time this year. Do I contradict myself? Very well then, I contradict myself. I am large and contain multitudes.

And now for something completely different: Photos of the wines I had the pleasure of drinking this Holiday Season.

Left to Right: Delicious and we had two bottles, didn't actually drink, I think we drank this one, delectable was the Vin Santo. All wines hail from the cellar of Mr. Brad Wells who happens to be the father of my wife. Mr. Wells has shared numerous bottles of wildly delectable Old World Wines. Whenever in his house he pours something outrageous, hard-t0-come by and honestly aged - never a dull moment for the palate.

Pol Roger 1999. We def drank this. I drank most of it because it was very good. Mr. Wells is not a huge bubbly fan, never has been, and hence, there was more to go around. Wowy wowy yum.

The Nightcap. On the rocks. I was just one years old when this rummy made it to bottle.


  1. Erick Grau

    I have about half a case left of my Santbru wines… I discovered it during a wine tasting in London, UK and had a hard time finding in USA. Once I did, I had to buy a case – this was in 2006. Its aged nicely and holds up very well in 2012 :) Glad to see others have discovered it.


    1. Jonny Cigar Author


      Indeed: I was at first skeptical and all at once mad! that we weren’t opening the Williams Selyem, but frankly, I was delighted and drank this wine to my hearts content. The nose actually reminded me of a Margaux, which was wild.

      – Jonny

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