Whole New Worlds
There is little that can trump the excitement of exploring a new world. The great wilderness of wines is that (not quite Aldous Huxley-ish) brave new world for me.
At Crystal Wine‘s thematic tasting of named wines in Decanter Magazine‘s Best of France 2011, i was amazed to find two bottles that nosed like roasted meat – the Chateau Lafon-Rochet, St Estephe 4CC 2004 (Decanter: 16.75) and another which i can’t recall (memo to self to take contemporaneous notes). Tasting in parallel with perusing the tasting notes in Decanter was very helpful in figuring out the vernacular of the wine world.
And at The Wine Gallery’s Magnum Wine Fair, was intrigued enough by the intensely floral aroma of the Mario Lucchetti Guardengo Lacrima di Morro d’ Alba Superiore 2009 to get a bottle of it, despite the self-imposed purchasing ban until storage is sorted. 100% native Lacrima grapes. “Violets and raspberry jam” it seems.
And happily, quite a few new-ish wine bars in Singapore offer by-the-glass or Enomatic machine menus that give n00bs the opportunity to take bottles out for a test drive. More expensive than purchasing the whole bottle and the wines won’t be in as good shape, but as an L-plater, i’m just happy to have a go:
Vintry Wine Bar & Restaurant at Royal Selangor, Clarke Quay with its 4 Enomatic wine-dispensing machines;
Praelum Wine Bistro (facebook) at Duxton Hill (2 Enomatic machines); and
Yesterday, i was roped in at literally the last minute (ok, if literally, then last 15 minutes, while eating breakfast) to help run a Christianity Explored group. The six/seven week course gives people an opportunity to explore Christianity and think about what life is all about: no question too silly or offensive, no pressure to convert or anything. Basically, Mark’s Gospel is the car key so they can take Christianity out for a bit of a test drive for the next two months, see how it works, and discover if they really need what the Bible claims they need.
It’s a whole new world for some and it’s so very exciting to be on hand to show them around. Thankfully, we’re not used car salesmen working on commission nor are we selling lemons. I mean, if it’s a relationship with God that’s on offer, all that we need to do is to articulate the wonderful free offer and tell people how to accept it. No payment needed. No better offer, ever.
In Mark 1, we are already confronted with the claims of Jesus. Mark says he is the Christ (not a surname, a title – Χριστός “the Anointed One”, Greek translation of Hebrew מָשִׁיחַ (“Messiah”)) and the Son of God. What proof is there? In just this chapter alone:
- Isaiah prophesised that before the Lord came, there would be a messenger preparing the way – before Jesus came, John the Baptist prepared the people for his arrival.
- The Spirit resting on him points to him being the stump of Jesse who will judge and rule the earth (as prophesised by Isaiah – Isaiah 11).
- God himself attests that Jesus is his Son.
Naturally, this led to good questions about the historicity of the Bible, the accuracy of human authorship, the objectivity of the accounts, possibility of miracles, with some Plato, Pascal (though only a passing reference to that rather misunderstood wager), Richard Dawkins stirred in for good measure.
I suppose this isn’t often said about issues of life-and-death, but: this is going to be serious fun!