Wilde Ferment

It is well known that Oscar Wilde was an epicurean of the highest order. Did he not aver that chefs were only lying in the gutter looking up at the Michelin stars? Most of his work featured references to gastronomy, most notably his verse (or wurst) drama Salami, his treatise on favourite tapas bars in Chelsea called “My Pick of Adorable Grazes” and his top ten mother’s wines “Les Dix Win du Mere’s Vins”. His best known oeuvre, however, was his final play which has since become a favourite in repertory companies across the land. Here is an extract:


– I was discovered inside a case of free Gallo wine samples at Heathrow Airport.

– A Brand Blag?!

– I believe it was a case of Chardonnay destined for a restaurant in Belgravia.

– Mr Worthless, the grape variety is irrelevant. I will not consent to my niece conducting a relationship with a supermarket trolley or marrying into a wine lake.

– My intentions are entirely honourable. I believe in minimal intervention.

– My dear sir, doing nothing may be the natural thing, but nature itself is entirely unnatural. We should avoid contact with it at all costs.

– Do you not enjoy the taste of wine, Lady Brandall?

– It is so much better not to enjoy wine. One can then boast about one’s disappointment. Besides all pleasures are fleeting. My disappointment invariably begins the moment the cork is pulled.

– I would venture to disagree. I believe that one does not taste wine. It tastes us.

– I’m sure, Mr Worthless that is a dreadfully modern thing to say. However, it does not avoid the fact that the wine you make has no purpose other than as a medicinal cure for fainting fits. Unless you can furnish me with evidence of a noble viticultural lineage I must ask you to cease paying court to my niece.

To be continued….

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