Wine Mixing Traditions

Now that is a cup for wine!

This was a workshop that my most awesome friend, Candice, and I put together. She and her husband own a winery/meadery in Colorado named Dithyramb Winery. Therefore the subject was one of interest. We found some interesting info on top of some tasty recipes. The ancient Romans and Greeks thought it was barbaric to drink wine undiluted. Candice found this piece written by Eubulus in his circa 375BC play Semele or Dionysus concerning the consumption of wine:

“Three bowls do I mix for the temperate: one to health, which they empty first, the second to love and pleasure, the third to sleep. When this bowl is drunk up, wise guests go home. The fourth bowl is ours no longer, but belongs to violence; the fifth to uproar, the sixth to drunken revel, the seventh to black eyes, the eight is the policeman’s, the ninth belong to biliousness, and the tenth to madness and hurling the furniture.”

This exert is what made the wheels in my mind spin with the thought of doing a workshop such as this:

WEDDING WINE

from Elizabeth Cunningham’s The Passion of Mary Magdalen

I don’t know exactly what was in the wine.
It tasted fiery and sweet.
I suspect it was red mead: Maeve Rhuad
Mead mixed with red wine.
An intimate joke, a pun made by the Bridegroom
that only the Bride would understand.
Its effect transcended any ingredient.
It was like drinking life itself:
new-turned earth, sun, wind scented with sea,
blossoms opening at first light, the ripe perfection of fruit—
the elements gathered on our tongues, lingering on our breath.
It was like drinking love itself,
the passion of the Bride and Bridegroom distilled,
shared among the guests,
flowing in all our veins, rivers from a single rise.
If we were drunk, we were divinely drunk.
We were in love. In Love. All of us.
None of us could bear to part that night.
The stars were so beautiful. We were so beautiful.
In the end, we all slept together,
no one alone, each one beloved. 

As we shared what we had learned, we passed clay cups (the Greeks used a kylix during symposiums which were “drinking parties” for general socializing) filled with the different concoctions to share with each other. We had fun exploring this alternate world of wine, so for all the peeps who attended the workshop this past week and all you on the inter-webs, here are the recipes:

The Ancient Greek/Roman Way – 3 parts water to 1 part red wine (I find a half n half mix is nice, not too diluted but helps chase off the potential headache in the morning)

Muslum – Mix honey in with red wine, to your taste.

Maeve Rhuad – 1 part red wine to 1 part mead

Mulled Wine – well, I don’t really have a recipe, but I bought the spice mix from a quaint place called Savory. Check them out at http://www.savoryspiceshop.com. After passing this cup around we added some water and mead to the mix and it took alot of bite off.

Turk’s Blood – 3oz champagne, 2oz red wine

French Monkey – 2/3 glass red, 1/2 glass Orangina (I used San Pellegrino Orange)

Seaside Summerbliss – 2 parts red wine, 3 parts sweet apple cider

Red Wine Cooler – 4oz red wine, 2oz lemon/lime soda, 2oz ginger ale (it was mentioned that just ginger ale was better)

If anyone has any other wine mixing recipes/traditions, old world or modern, please feel free to post them!

Cheers!

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