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Wine consumption


pattimw
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As a waiter I work 4-5 nights a week and only have dinner at home, with wife and daughter, 2-3 times a week. We always have wine with dinner on the "home dinner" nights, usually a full bottle.

On the nights I work I carbo/protein load before work then post work I usually, OK always, have a cold beer. If I have been fortunate to get home before midnight I will often indulge in a little antipasto and a glass of red before hitting the sheets.

All in all I would guess my personal consumption is about 3 bottles a week, but I taste an average of 20-25 a week so who knows how much gets absorbed despite spitting.

''Wine is a beverage to enjoy with your meal, with good conversation, if it's too expensive all you talk about is the wine.'' Bill Bowers - The Captain's Tavern, Miami

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I would have no compunction about drinking half a bottle on any given night-- at least when I'm not on Weight Watchers. I usually don't because (diet aside) my boyfriend and I don't have meals together every night and I don't want to open a bottle for myself. When we go out to eat, though, we always split a bottle of wine and often have a port or something afterwards, too. That seems like about the perfect amount, to me.

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I agree, my wife (who is rather petite) and I split a bottle when out, I probably consume about 60% of it though. That seems to be the perfect amount with a good dinner. After dinner we often go out and I have a scotch/cognac with my cigar while she enjoys a cosmo or two. At home, I usually have 1-2 glasses with dinner 5 times a week or so (every night in the summer, when my wine consumption increases, especially whites).

I think that we need to look to the Europeans more in regards to alcohol consumption in general. To some extent America has, and as a result, modified the definition of "moderate" alcohol consumption to up to 1-2 spirits or 3-4 glasses of wine per day. I still remember reading about a study done of a small French village where, on average, they consumed 1/2 bottle of wine at lunch and another 1/2 bottle at dinner with no ill effects and actually beneficial results (long age, low heart disease, etc.). Could you imagine businesses allowing employees to have wine with lunch like in Europe? I wonder if everyone would be happier, stress would go down and production would go up or nothing would get done? If I ever make it to Europe and get to experience the sensual (of the senses) lifestyle that is commonplace I might never return! :biggrin:

Edited by davidbdesilva (log)

"Nutrirsi di cibi prelibati e trasformare una necessita in estasi."

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Geez, I'm starting to feel like an alchy here... :wacko: Though I've not been drinking as much wine lately, our normal consumption was one to two bottles per evening. After moving back to Louisville, KY after 23 years, I've renewed my interest in many of the fine Bourbon's made here...and still manage a glass or two of wine.

But, when I was in corporate banking in the 80's in California, it was quite common to have wine at lunch. In fact, we were encouraged to show our customers a good time and were simply told that if we got too drunk not to come back to the office. In retrospect, it was the perfect career joice for me. :biggrin:

Also, many of us found it beneficial to head over to the London Wine Bar (SF) as soon as was practical after 4:30pm so as not to suffer any ill effects from the abstinence period, if any, following lunch. :smile:

Michael Harp

CopperPans.com

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come on! americans are very fetishly affected by wine consumption.

most spanish, french, italians, greeks would laugh at the american obsession with alcoholism. i drink until i'm satiated with the meal and beyond for meditation. what is dionysius trying to tell us? it's foolish and victorian.

Bingo.

Ping.

I would say more, but I have drunk too much wine.

Love you all!

Edited to put a full stop after 'Bingo'

Edited by naguere (log)

Martial.2,500 Years ago:

If pale beans bubble for you in a red earthenware pot, you can often decline the dinners of sumptuous hosts.

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come on! americans are very fetishly affected by wine consumption.

most spanish, french, italians, greeks would laugh at the american obsession with alcoholism. i drink until i'm satiated with the meal and beyond for meditation. what is dionysius trying to tell us? it's foolish and victorian.

cause it is fun to talk about. :biggrin:

and I hope you didn't think my original post was in a "victorian" spirit. I don't think Americans drink enough wine, or enjoy it as much as they should.

i like to think of it as more of food stuff than a means to get schnukkered. Even though the schnukkering seems to be a by-product of the enjoyment, on occasion. :smile:

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Does anyone else here remember the press flap when Jean Claude Killy was interviewed on TV regarding his wine consumption during the Olympic competitions?

Hey, that is who my parents named me after! :biggrin:

To the question at hand, I generally have two glasses of wine an evening, one with dinner, and another to sip as the evening goes on. It is fairly rare when I don't have wine, but for meals that might be spicy or not necessarily wine-friendly, I may reach for a beer instead.

All the best,

Jean

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We have a bottle every night with dinner. I have a glass waiting on the table for my wife when she walks in the door. Every night she has to try to ID the wine, otherwise I won't tell her what it is. She is quite good at picking wines, which leads to another subject : Is the female pallate better than a males?? I've heard this in the past.

If you don't eat your meat, you can't have any pudding. How could you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat!??

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We have a bottle every night with dinner. I have a glass waiting on the table for my wife when she walks in the door. Every night she has to try to ID the wine, otherwise I won't tell her what it is. She is quite good at picking wines, which leads to another subject : Is the female pallate  better than a males?? I've heard this in the past.

So fun. I do this with my husband sometimes.

I have heard from various sources that women have a better sense of smell, which obviously, is related. I wonder if there are more female "supertasters" than male. I would be curious to learn more...but this might be a separate topic...

Edited by pattimw (log)
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We have a bottle every night with dinner. I have a glass waiting on the table for my wife when she walks in the door. Every night she has to try to ID the wine, otherwise I won't tell her what it is. She is quite good at picking wines, which leads to another subject : Is the female pallate  better than a males?? I've heard this in the past.

What a great game... I have to try that with my husband.

We are in the bottle a day crowd, on average. Less if we have evening activies with the kids. More if we are home on the weekends.

What's wrong with peanut butter and mustard? What else is a guy supposed to do when we are out of jelly?

-Dad

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  • 1 month later...
When my wife comes in the door at night the first words out of her mouth are "and what wine are we having tonight hun".

I have a glass waiting on the table for my wife when she walks in the door.

Our women have it so easy!!! The wife and I are the same way in our house. She enjoys easy drinking wines.

If eating at home (i.e., I cook), we will always have A bottle.

If dining out on weekends, we'll bring two bottles for the two of us, sometimes not finishing it all or shaing, sometimes we do. I'm a big fan of loooooonngggg dinners, where this is possible w/o getting sloshed. If a restaurant could figure out a tasting menu w/ wine pairings, at a decent price, we would drink less than we do at our local BYOBs.

Being out of town for work is usually wine/drink free for me, although, I'm currently working in Milwaukee for a brewing company, where it's good for business to have a few.

So mostly in line with everyone else here, if at home, and having dinner with someone else, we'll open a bottle.

The European consumption vs. the US question is a good one. does anyone know the per capita consumption of other countries vs. US ?

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does anyone know the per capita consumption of other countries vs. US ?

Data for 1997.

Unfortunately, we dont' know about distribution, i.e. the consumption of a "typical" wine consumer. For example, in Bavaria, Germany, many people drink almost exclusively beer, so the per-capita consumption data doesn't tell much about the individual consumption patterns of the wine drinker minority.

Make it as simple as possible, but not simpler.

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The European consumption vs. the US question is a good one.  does anyone know the per capita consumption of other countries vs. US ?

This is a chronic question in the US (it used to be talked about in wine publications, before there were online wine forums), and the previous respondent pointed to the chronic source for answers which is a good one: the Wine Institute Web site (which has lots of data by various breakdowns, if you peruse the site). Formerly these data were distributed on paper.

The chief per-capita wine-consuming countries, if I remember the data offhand, are in western and eastern Europe and in Latin America. If you take the top several of these in any year and compare them to the US for per-capita use, you end up with a ratio. During my own interest in wines which is not quite 30 years, this ratio has evolved somewhat, from maybe 12:1 down to 8:1 or thereabouts (again if memory serves). That is to say, the US remains far from being a mainstream wine-consuming culture. (This ratio by the way has long tantalized US wine-business people and may be one reason for the very existence of such trade institutions as the Wine Institute.)

I've seen some very different social attitudes about beverages with alcohol in different countries. When people from outside look at the US in this connection, they are apt to remark about the presence of extremes rather than moderation and subtlety. People with a casual awareness of the 1919-1933 US alcohol prohibition aren't always also aware of the degree of US social problems with hardcore alcohol addiction in the 19th century, or that it was largely a beer-or-whiskey culture. When Schoonmaker and Marvel's book American Wines appeared, some years after Prohibition, still three-quarters of the wine consumed in the US was fortified. There were nevertheless people who appreciated wine as a healthy and moderate part of everyday life and eating, in the European model, and were actively promoting this in the US, then and earlier.

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My wife and I drink wine daily. Sometimes two glasses each or sometimes more spread out the evening with food or not. When we have dinner with our French friends we don't move from the table for hours. I don't count how many glasses everyone has, but we have spent long afternoons with frineds going into long evenings, drinking apertifs, different wines for different courses, digetifs, one for the road (wife is the designated driver). Other occassions it's a few bottles of Vin du Pays on the table. I don't recall ever running out of wine.

French people serve wine at children's dinner parties (not for the kids) but for the parent's who are chaperoning. At the French school my 6 year old attends, wine is served during PA meetings (again not for the kids, for the parents). There is a French children's character that is shown visiting a winery and drinking wine on it's website. Can anyone even imagine Mickey Mouse or Barney visiting a winery? :laugh:

Totally different cultural attitudes toward wine.

I can be reached via email chefzadi AT gmail DOT com

Dean of Culinary Arts

Ecole de Cuisine: Culinary School Los Angeles

http://ecolecuisine.com

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French people serve wine at children's dinner parties (not for the kids) but for the parent's who are chaperoning. At the French school my 6 year old attends, wine is served during PA meetings (again not for the kids, for the parents). There is a French children's character that is shown visiting a winery and drinking wine on it's website. Can anyone even imagine Mickey Mouse or Barney visiting a winery?  :laugh:

Totally different cultural attitudes toward wine.

You've brushed up against something close to my heart on this subject: the American obsession with hiding the "perils" of alcohol from its youth. A country that can send you to war to kill and/or be killed but that doesn't allow you to drink a glass of wine in public is one that is hard for me to get my head around sometimes.

I just remember so well all of my peers at a certain age getting away from their parents and learning to drink the hard way: with a bunch of other kids who didn't know what the hell they were doing. Learning to be responsible with anything almost always is easier the earlier you start it. While I'm not suggesting that five year old children be attaching bottles of gin to their belts, I am saying that the gut-level reaction most Americans have to a fourteen year old enjoying half a glass of wine with a nice dinner and surrounded by adults is, frankly, absurd... and it's my belief that it creates more problems than it solves. The National Youth Rights Association is one of the few folks I can even find on the web that dedicates any real ink to this.

(I also fall into the bottle-ish per day category, so maybe the demons in that glass of wine I'll have later tonight are the real culprits. :unsure: )

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French people serve wine at children's dinner parties (not for the kids) but for the parent's who are chaperoning. At the French school my 6 year old attends, wine is served during PA meetings (again not for the kids, for the parents). There is a French children's character that is shown visiting a winery and drinking wine on it's website. Can anyone even imagine Mickey Mouse or Barney visiting a winery?  :laugh:

Totally different cultural attitudes toward wine.

You've brushed up against something close to my heart on this subject: the American obsession with hiding the "perils" of alcohol from its youth. A country that can send you to war to kill and/or be killed but that doesn't allow you to drink a glass of wine in public is one that is hard for me to get my head around sometimes.

I just remember so well all of my peers at a certain age getting away from their parents and learning to drink the hard way: with a bunch of other kids who didn't know what the hell they were doing. Learning to be responsible with anything almost always is easier the earlier you start it. While I'm not suggesting that five year old children be attaching bottles of gin to their belts, I am saying that the gut-level reaction most Americans have to a fourteen year old enjoying half a glass of wine with a nice dinner and surrounded by adults is, frankly, absurd... and it's my belief that it creates more problems than it solves. The National Youth Rights Association is one of the few folks I can even find on the web that dedicates any real ink to this.

(I also fall into the bottle-ish per day category, so maybe the demons in that glass of wine I'll have later tonight are the real culprits. :unsure: )

Amen. Ours is sadly a culture which demonizes wine, rather than considering it the quenching beverage and superlative food partner that it's recognized to be in every other country that produces it. It becomes the "forbidden fruit", almost literally, and is then the subject of freshman drinking binges and bad experiences that will forever mar the experience for the unfortunate fool that's binging. I came late to wine, not for lack of trying on my mom's part. I just didn't have a sophisticated enough palate for it until I was a bit older. The tannin was "yucky" to me. I've made up for lost time, however. Now I suggest leaving a wide berth between me and the bottle. :biggrin:

I've often thought it would be a far better idea to lower the drinking age to 16 and raise the driving permit age to 17 or 18. Get a few years drinking experience under your belt before getting behind the wheel of a car and the world would be a safer place.

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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People with a casual awareness of the 1919-1933 US alcohol prohibition aren't always also aware of the degree of US social problems with hardcore alcohol addiction in the 19th century, or that it was largely a beer-or-whiskey culture.

Which to a large degree was also the case with much of Europe, at least Northern Europe. England's struggles with Gin, for one, were epic. But what these other countries had was an alternative paradigm in the upper classes' aesthetically-informed consumption of wine. America, ever-Puritanical and always hostile to any form of elitism, did not develop this - or, to take the extreme view, explicitly rejected it.

Southern Europe developed a wine culture throughout the social order, of course, since it was available in situ.

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I'd say we average near a bottle of wine a day. At least saying 'we' rather than I lessens it a little bit. Though we do try to leave room for the beer, gin, vodka, and whiskey. I drink more of the wine but then again, I'll usually have wine while she has her martini/gibson/vesper.

As to meal-time, if we don't have wine we have water. Now of course our 'wine' consumption is not counting our port comsumption mind you.

Charles a food and wine addict - "Just as magic can be black or white, so can addictions be good, bad or neither. As long as a habit enslaves it makes the grade, it need not be sinful as well." - Victor Mollo

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  • 3 weeks later...
I think American's drinking habits tend towards the extremes - too much or nothing. I wonder if this is changing with wine and food more in the public consciousness. Just curious what your personal preferences are, what you see around you - are we tending more towards the European way, with wine more as a beverage like water or juice as opposed to wine as a special occasion drink or a means to inebriation.  :wink:

That they do. Oddly enough American drinking has gone down. Step back 100 years or so and you'll find people chugging pints of whiskey to win bar bets. :)

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Personally, a nice bottle of wine with dinner between me and my parents is usual except on the pizza or sausage/kraut nights which obviously call for a beer. So between the 3 of us it is about 1 1/2 to 2 glasses of wine a night.

Though, sometimes before bed, a nip of bourbon or brandy helps to call the sandman in.

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Although my consumption is not nightly (due to a vain effort at weight control), when I drink it is usually a couple Reidel glasses, ie half a bottle. If my husband is drinking with me, we easily finish a bottle and sometimes start another. It is relaxing, celebratory, calming, a balm to excite or soothe.

On the 'puritanical' front, I think religion plays a part in our country's negative views of alcohol. My husband's grandmother never misses a moment to point out that she does not approve of wine or other alcoholic beverages...she insists Jesus drank grape juice!

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