The Other Grapes’ Reactions

The Other Grapes' Reactions

Meanwhile, at the café next door…

“I’m glad he vetoed it,” Madame Merlot said. She was in her purple cloak, at the fashionable café, enjoying some gossip with her friends.

“I am, too,” said Rachel Rosé. “Frankly, Zinfandel was getting a little uppity.”

“I know!” Patty Petite Sirah pounded the table so hard, she splashed the others with her inky essence. “She was told me I wasn’t alcoholic enough! And I was, like, 16.9!”

“If Little Missy Zin was any more alcoholic,” hissed Princess Pinot Noir, “she’d be Isopropyl!”

The varieties laughed so hard they almost started re-fermenting.

“Suddenly the Baroness Barbera cried out, “Look who just waltzed in!” The ladies turned toward the door. It was State Senator Carole Migden.

“Let’s pretend we don’t see her,” Madame Merlot said. All the varieties opened their purses and made believe they were adding a little grape concentrate to their noses.

But State Senator Migden walked right over to their table, and she certainly did look crushed.

“You varieties won this round,” she said, shaking her fist, “but I’ll be back.”

“Wasn’t that one of the Governor’s lines?” sniffed Princess Pinot Noir. 

“Don’t take it so hard, Senator,” said Countess Cabernet, who had been mute up to that point. She was from Napa or Sonoma, and very well-mannered. “We’ve all been crushed. It only hurts for a while.”

“That’s easy for you to say,” replied State Senator Migden. “But I have better things to do than get into a catfight with a bunch of varieties. I’m meeting my friend for brunch.”

As if on cue, the café door opened again, and it was none other than Ms. Zinfandel herself. 

“Such a hussy, pretending to be elegant when all she is, is a briary, brawny old thing,” whispered Sharon Chardonnay, adjusting her coat of oak. “I even heard she has residual sugar.” 

“Ewww,” the other varieties said.

State Senator Migden and Ms. Zin sat at their table, the former sipping a San Pellegino, the latter drinking herself. The varieties returned to their gossip. Suddenly, the café door burst open and a posse of cellar rats entered, wearing shoulder holsters. In their midst was none other than the Governor himself, come for lunch.

“Whether you are a tangy Sauvignon Blanc from Death Valley or a buxom Syrah from Hollywood,” the governor began. The Governor’s aide whispered something in his ear.

The Governor decided to forego his speech, and sat at a table which, unfortunately, happened to be right next to that of Ms. Zin and State Senator Migden. The waiter took the Governor’s order; he ordered a glass of Zinfandel.

Ms. Zin’s ears perked up.

“Would that be from the San Joaquin Valley or the Sierra Foothills?” the waiter asked.

“Neither one, girlie-man,” the Governor said. “Old vine Sonoma. Now, hasta la vista, baby.”

Ms. Zin stood up and addressed the Governor. “I am an old vine Zinfandel, and I am from Sonoma. Perhaps you would care to drink a glass of me.”

The café fell silent. No one said a word. Even Rachel Rosé blushed.

And so it was that Governor Schwarzenegger drank Ms. Zin, and she tasted so good, he finished her. Feeling quite content, he stood on the table, did a flip-flop, and declared Zinfandel the official, historical wine of California, sending the other varieties into lamentation but insuring his own re-election.




Published on September 1, 2006