A Wine Drinkers Guide to Isle Au Haut
After a few weeks of retirement, I began to get restless; so I asked my
guidance counselor about my problem. He said I should find something
meaningful like going back to school. So I wrote away for some college
catalogues, studied them, and discovered a course called wine appreciation.
Now they didn’t teach that in engineering school. All I knew about the
subject was that there were two colors, red and white, and the octane
rating was in fine print at the bottom of the label.
I signed up for some college credits in the subject. Then I found out
that Medicare wouldn’t pay and that it costs a lot to get credits. Besides,
I was afraid that the final exam would be more than I wanted to drink at one
time, so I decided to audit the course; just sit there and drink it in so to speak.
Well, you wouldn’t believe the things you could say about a bottle of wine.
It was like a chemistry class crossed with a poetry class with a bit of science
fiction thrown in. But, it gave me the idea that if I combined what they said
about wines with some things I could say about the Island, we might have a
story. This is how it goes:
A Wine Drinkers Guide to Isle Au Haut
By Charles F. Turner
Isle Au Haut – This is obviously a French wine. No one pronounces it
right the first time, but everyone knows what you mean. It is difficult
to find, but once discovered it might he addictive. It has, from a distance,
a mystical quality not easily defined. It is perfect for vacations, but
for year round consumption it should be left for the very hearty.
Town Dock - Town Dock is the common wine of Isle au Haut. Everyone
tries it. It is aged in old oil drums and and bottled in recycled chlorox jugs.
Vintage date means nothing as color, flavor and bouquet are different
every day depending on tide, weather, and proximity of bait barrels.
It is the perfect wine for arrivals and departures. Its great diversity makes
it the ultimate in politically correct beverages.
Island Church - This is a very strict, simple and severe wine, the
product of Calvinist grapes. It is consumed with song, psalms, and
sermons on summer Sundays. Look for the gathering on the hillside
below the steeple with the weathervane.
Town Hall - Town Hall is the multipurpose wine of the Island. It
is a hearty, robust wine that goes with everything; meetings,
elections, dances, graduations, or recreation. If you like green wine
you’ll like Town Hall because it is green.
General Store – A sign is posted to the effect that you cannot drink
General Store wine on the premises. That’s no hardship. You just
have to step outside to the fuel dock, chase off a few seagulls, and
enjoy yourself. While you are on the fuel dock, note that the fuel
pipes are labelled “gasoline", “kerosine,” and "wine.”
Thunder Gulch – after a sprucy first sip, theres a taint of acid rain,
followed by a deep mossy aroma ending with a thundering splash.
Close your eyes now and listen. What you hear are thousands of
gallons of wine being poured into a great granite goblet. It fills,
empties, and fills again. Magnificent!
Goat Trail – For mature wine drinkers this offers a brash, cocky
introduction followed by a fu1l bodied, leggy ambiance which
passes into a gentle earthy aftertaste all within the sound of the sea.
Duck Harbor Mountain – This drink provides an insolent
nervy ascent which climaxes in a sudden, transcendent, almost
intoxicating enlightenment and exciting high. If you like a
natural high, you’ll love Duck Harbor Mountain.
Mount Champlain – This beverage has a gentle smooth blueberry
flavor that matures to a dry but likeable vista when consumed.
It is good for everyone and it doesn’t require a warning from the
surgeon general on its label.
Ridge Trail - Although beginning and ending gently, this a robust
long bodied and challenging vintage. Best reserved for the stout
connoisseur. If you are over 40, a permission slip from your
doctor is recommended before trying it.
Seal Trap – A bumpy, wild first sip mellows quickly to a passionate
but tranquil ambiance with a delightful gentle texture. Seal Trap
goes very well with picnics.
Point Lookout – An exclusive mixture of old mature flavors with
bold yuppy accents blended by woody pathways. Look for The
PLA coat-of-arms emblem on the label.
Lighthouse –A light, ruby vintage in a distinctive white container,
always served on the rocks. Lighthouse appeals to a lot of people
who like to drink around but who have never drunk in a lighthouse