1998-03-17: Where Hath All the Wines Gone
Hast thou ever tried a fine stout ale from Minoc? Or a heady pilsner from Jhelom? And, naturally, nothing can ever top the dazzling wine from Yew. I cannot think of another wine that even comes close to the quality from Yew these days. Actually, is there even another vineyard in the entire realm? Hmmm... none comes easily to mind. Not in this age.
Which brings me to an interesting, perhaps discouraging, thought. You may not be the type to notice, so allow me to point this out for thee – the selection of wines has diminished greatly over the last few years.
- I can remember, not so long ago, when I would order a light, crisp white wine to accompany a meal in Trinsic. Such a wine was from the valleys just to the west of Trinsic and slightly to the north. I believe there is some kind of hedge thing there now. Pity. The wines from that area were extraordinary.
- I think fondly back and recall a bold red wine from Moonglow that was the wonder of taverns everywhere. No night of gazing at the stars in Moonglow would be complete without a bottle of this winsome vintage.
- A lighter red wine from Cove lacked the refinement of the Moonglow wines, but overcame that with a briskness and… a-hem… a lack of cost that made it a wine for all occasions.
- Who among us could forget that grand blush wine from Magincia? At first, the thought of a pink wine was… well, quite ridiculed. Yet the fame of this wonderfully sweet yet ticklish wine grew quickly as word spread across the land swifter than a horde of orcs on the trail of a reagentless mage.
But today when I step into mine favorite tavern, the selection of wines has drastically fallen. A selection of one wine to be accurate. While the available wine does come from Yew and is a breath-taking vintage, I cannot help but mourn the loss of the many other fine wines I knew so well in days long past. From tavern to tavern all across our vast land, from the smallest inn to the fanciest bordello, the same fate awaits all lovers of fine wines – not a single establishment in realm hath anything other than the wine from Yew. What happened to all of the wines? Where hath they gone? Why did they disappear? Is there some sort of plot amongst the seemingly innocent monks of the abbey in Yew to control some sort of monastic monopoly of wines?
I mean not to complain, or to bemoan, or to grumble, or to whimper, or to snivel, or to mewl this fate. But how does such a thing come to be? Completely unnoticed. Totally unexpected. Without mercy or compassion. Why? Why? Why?
As thou dost ponder this, friends, think on another question: Where have all the ales gone?