Thursday, October 26, 2017

Wine Flights - A PDX History

Wine Flights - A PDX History

Uncork. Relax. Unwind

The first time I heard the term flight, besides a flight of stairs, and that France flight that made me as white as a ghost, was in Michigan about 22 years ago. This was craft beer at its infancy. At that time I knew nothing of wine or beer.

In a very small and quaint town, we stopped into a brew pub for lunch and I ordered my first flight of beer. It was presented on an attractive paper mat, which had the name of the beer and a brief description. I was intrigued.

For the first couple years I ordered a flight at every brew pub I could find. This allowed me to figure out which styles I loved the most. It was Pale Ale then. I have evolved. 

To be quite honest, a wine flight is just a fancy term for a tasting of several different wines. The best ones really showcase the wine in a format that is unpretentious and informational. You know, like Paradocx- Shameless plug.

In the early years, we were located at Shoppes at Longwood Village in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, our tastings were a bit different. It was pretty much a quick sample of the taster's choice for a small fee. Paradocx too has evolved.

The old flight books

When we first started offering wine flights, we presented many options in a flight book, like on of those never ending menus you get from The Cheesecake Factory. Customers had many choices. We named the flights White Flight A or Sweet Flight B or Mixed Fight C.

We realized this created some stress and overwhelmed the customers and we really just wanted them to have a fun and relaxing experience. This coincided with our mission. Uncork, Relax, Unwind. 

We finally streamlined the tasting and created a flight board to display our flights:   White, Red, Sweet and Beer. This made choosing significantly less stressful. But don't worry, we also allow patrons to customize their tasting for a small additional fee.

The perks of our flights is to allow customers to sit and relax while enjoying  a sample of their selected Paradocx wine with family and friends. Our patrons enjoy a variety of seating options to best enhance their Paradocx experience.

Instead of standing at a bar and listening to the staff describe the wine, just to forget what they drank in the first place, they now receive attractive tasting cards for each of the four wines.  Never feel you have to follow the cards, which are a suggestion, it is most important that you enjoy the wine and your Paradocx experience.

Have fun with the tastings and come up with your own notes. Now that you're finished you can have a glass of your favorite wine and take a bottle home, or two! 

Creative Wine Flights

I came across these cool and attractive wine flight holders. Take a look below. 

One Final Thought

Glass Clinking

I love rituals. Tailgating, Trick Or Treating, Stocking Stuffing (Yes, we still do this) and Candle Blowing, but as we continue to participate in these long-lived rituals and customs, we seldom ask where they came from. Where do they come from?

Drinking, especially wine drinking has rituals as well. Take the clinking of the glass for toasting,  I love a good clink and love a good toast, especially with cinnamon and sugar, though one day I am sure I will be covered in PDX Barn Red if I continue clinking so hard.

Ok, so why do we clink the glasses? There are a couple of theories. One is a bit dark. Apparently poisoning was a big issue way back when. The folk lore says that the host and guest would clink the glasses together to intentionally spill the wine into the other glass so that if it were poisoned they both would end up on the floor. 

The other claims people would make some noise by clinking glasses to ward off evil spirits. Apparently, as cool as these are, they are not true. 

In the beginning, most groups drank from the same vessel. This brought a sense of trust and camaraderie. To drink from ones own cup would have sent a message of distrust. "Hey what's up with the bloke with and his fancy goblet. You don't trust us?" 

So when glasses and fancy drinking goblets came around, people realized they were using all their senses but one: Hearing. To experience this they would clink their glass and feel a part of the trusting community again. 

My wife killed us all

Ok, so there's always a non drinker at the table. Perhaps they just don't drink or they are the DD. Anyway, what do they do when everyone is toasting and clinking? Raise there water glass and toast as well?

According to Greek mythology, toasting with water means you just wished us dead and insulted the gods. Thanks a lot hun. 

Apparently drinking from the River Lethe while spending eternity in the underworld, the Greeks could forget their past mortal lives. As a result, the Greeks would toast the dead with water filled glasses to symbolize their voyage to the underworld. 

Talk about morbid. And to toast your host with water is an insult as well, and is said to cause harm or even death. And by no means  never toast to the gods with an inferior drink such as water. You may be taking that river to the underworld earlier than you expected. 

Here is the solution, fill your glass with our Spiced Red and pass it to me. I will trust you and our lives will be spared. 

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