In a wine culture obsessed with the idea of pairing, far too few people talk about the best complement to a nice glass of wine: sex. Yes, that's right, forget grilled meats and Zinfandel, oysters and Champagne, the best combo I know of is a bottle of something good and some skin-to-skin contact.
I'm not kidding.
Of course, he might have been, but no matter how firmly his tongue was placed in his cheek, there's a certain amount of truth to the notion.
Wine tastes good on your lips, but it tastes better on the lips of your partner.
Great debate continues in the over-wrought world of wine and food pairing as to whether the match between the two is best tested by eating first, and then drinking, the reverse, or the middle ground I like to describe as "chew while you chug."
When it comes to wine and sex, however, I'm firmly in the wine before sex category, though I've never complained about a well chilled glass of Champagne afterwards.
Matching wine and sex is a lot easier than wine and food, thanks to the versatile nature of sex. It goes well with just about any wine, provided that the wine is served at the correct temperature (if you need a mnemonic: warm Chardonnay = no roll in the hay).
I've been keeping track of particularly successful matches over time, both my own and my friends, and have been surprised at how many are measured by conception -- I owe my own daughter to a nice bottle of Champagne, and a killer Russian River Pinot Noir -- though that may just be the particular life stage that my friends and I happen to be in at the moment. Six years ago I remember a particularly great evening thanks to a bottle of Vino Nobile de Montepulciano.
But back to the general theory. I find red to be better than white when it comes to truly great pairings. This perhaps is not entirely a surprise, but on the other hand, nor is it anywhere close to a hard and fast rule, so to speak.
And let's not forget the magic of the unplanned pairing,
Wine and sex paired well make sparks. Your skin feels warmer, time moves just slightly slower, and your heart feels full. What's not to love about that?
As with any wine match, I think it's important to get the proportions correct, but this may be more important with wine and sex than with other pairings. Too little and you might as well not have had any. Too much and things can get sloppy. However, I'm a firm believer in the idea that there shouldn't be any rules when it comes to wine pairings. I encourage you to find your own balance of flavors.
There is however, one place where I have to draw a line. Not because of any particular allegiance to the folks in Reims, but purely on the principle of the whole thing. Wine will always be more romantic than popping pills. Viagra truly is no substitute for Champagne.
Photo of a particular Michigan wine that I have not personally tried, courtesy of Melissa Schneider.
A wine book like no other. Photographs, essays, and wine recommendations. Learn more.
Vinography Images: Cool Climate Chardonnay Vinography and The Essence of Wine Shortlisted for the Roederer Awards 2015 West Sonoma Coast Wine Festival: July 31 - August 2, Sebastopol, CA Warm Up: How Wine Grapes Got to Australia I'll Drink to That: Alister Purbrick of Tahbilk Winery Pacific Northwest Swelters Vinography Unboxed: Week of July 12, 2015 I'll Drink to That: Ryan Mills-Knapp of Le District Restaurant Krug: A Quintessence of Champagne Vinography Images: Peck Peck Pest Control
Wine Will Never Smell the Same Again: Luca Turin and the Science of Scent Forlorn Hope: The Remarkable Wines of Matthew Rorick Debating Robert Parker At His Invitation Passopisciaro Winery, Etna, Sicily: Current Releases Should We Care What Winemakers Say? The Sweet Taste of Freedom: Austria's Ruster Ausbruch Wines 2009 Burgundy Vintage According to Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Charles Banks: The New Man Behind Mayacamas Wine from the Caldera: The Incredible Viticulture of Santorini Why Community Tasting Notes Sites Will Fail Chateau Rayas and the 2012 Vintage of Chateauneuf-du-Pape A Life Indomitable: The Wines of Casal Santa Maria, Portugal Bay Area Bordeaux: Tasting Santa Cruz Mountain Cabernets Forgotten Jewels: Reviving Chile's Old Vine Carignane The First-Timer's Guide to Les Trois Glorieuses of Hospices de Beaune