I'll never forget whatsisname. . .

I’m reading, enjoying, and learning a lot from “Inventing Wine: A New History of One of the World’s Oldest Pleasures,” by Paul Lukacs (W.W. Norton, $28.95), a fascinating book. The author essentially re-tells the story of wine from a skeptical point of view rather than the usual romantic angle, adding science and commerce to the mix to provide some new assessments to an old story.
       One such note is ironic: In the Middle Ages, people re-discovered an ancient Roman idea, making wine from dried or semi-dried grapes—the alcohol was higher, which helped preserve the wine, and sweeter, which offset the variable flavors and inevitable spoilage. The wines were highly prized, and in honor of the tradition, they were known as “Romneys.” Surely, the lifelong teetotal recent former Presidential candidate (remember him?) will appreciate that this particular irony didn’t turn up during the campaign. . .

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