The Wine that Changed my Life

The following post is in response to a fellow wine bloggers inspiration and challenge – Check out follow, tweet, Facebook @TheWineWhore

Prior to 2004, I was not a wine drinker. At 32, I came across a wine that changed the course of my entire direction in life. Okay, it was actually a woman but wine was involved from the beginning. I was coming out of a 9 year relationship and she was coming out of a 14 year relationship. Expectation was strong, desire was thick, and the anticipation of when we could see each other was unbearable. It’s the kind of feeling that makes you love falling in love. At 32 I felt like I was 15 again. Finally, time and fate allowed our complicated lives to come together and we were able to meet for something other than a work related event. Hours of conversation provided me the insight that she was a wine drinker; years of chasing women taught me that you don’t show up without flowers. I stopped at the local grocery store, quickly picked out the flowers and headed to the wine section. Entering this unknown land caused panic and anxiety foreign to me. Each label brought futher confusion. White or red? California or WA? What were all these names, Cabernet, Merlot, Syrah, Zinfandel? What did they mean? At the risk of not seeming cheap, I quickly ruled out the under $10 crowd. At the risk of overextending my recently single finances, I kept it under $20. I grabbed the bottle and hastily made my way to the checkout, to the car, up the hill, to her house.

I parked around the corner (it was complicated) and with my flowers and brown paper bag of juice, I quietly knocked on the door and entered a magical world of new experiences and passions. Over the next few years the youthful infatuation blossomed into an unbreakable soul mate kind of love. She introduced me to the beautiful, intricate, complex, and sexy world of wine. Things become les and less complicated and we moved forward with the next stage of our life. We purchased a house.

I had yet to ask her hand in marriage, but I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her. The closing of our home was quickly approaching. We signed the papers and awaited the final word that everything had recorded so we could get the keys. The weeks leading up to the closing, I had devised a plan. I arranged to pick up the keys a day earlier than what was originally communicated to us. I grabbed an old bistro table, CD player, went out and bought a few new house decorations that we had our eyes on and set up a magical after dinner surprise. This time I was at the same local grocery store picking up flowers, dessert for two, and headed to the wine aisle. The last two years had taught me that my first selection was on the generic side of a mass produced wine, but I knew exactly which wine I wanted and quickly scooped it up.

We headed to dinner and then went to a local hardware store to dream and scheme about all the changes we were going to make to our house. We decided to purchase a house warming plant (a palm tree that still lives in our front room) and headed back to the apartment. I suggested we make a detour to drive by the house. We walked up to the door with our plant and I pulled out the keys to our new life. Excitedly we entered. She was at a loss for words, overcome with joy and excitement. I quickly lit the fireplace, turned on the CD I had prepared, got out the dessert and opened the ‘special’ wine. The moment was perfect as if scripted from a movie. When the CD began playing ‘our song’ I quickly got up, went to the cabinet and slipped her final surprise on the wine charm and sat down. She immediately saw the sparkle and tears began to flow. I was barely able to choke out, “Kimberly, I love you, you are my soul mate, will you marry me?”

The wine: 2002 Meridian Merlot – CA $12 – The fondest memories are not always etched with the finest of tastes, it is the whole experience that stays with us.

P.S. She said yes!




Owner of Nectar Tasting Room in Spokane, WA. (@nectarwine) Publisher of Spokane Wine Magazine (@spowinemag), author, speaker, consultant and internet marketer with Nectar Media (@nectarmedia)

10 comments on “The Wine that Changed my Life

  1. Seattle Wine Gal

    AWWWW… This is great! I should let my boyfriend read this- may give him some ideas. :-)

  2. Randy Watson


    I know how hard posts like this are to write… personal stories, no matter how important or obscure, are not only hard to commit to words but also make for some of the most interesting and fun to read stories. I read so many wine blogs that just talk about Merlot this and Cab that… blah blah blah. What they are forgetting is that there is a story behind the bottle, and that’s what people of all wine knowledge levels REALLY want to read about.

    I hope to one day have the chance to meet you and your wife in person… this time, I’ll bring the Meridian Merlot! :)


  3. Tim

    What an interesting and heart warming story!

  4. Bethany

    Awwww! What a great story! I’m all misty over here. Much of our love story surrounds wine (got engaged at a winery, married at a winery, Honeymooned in Napa & Sonoma). There can be a lot of romance in those bottles!


  5. Coffee Social

    Josh, love this story–thanks for sharing! :)

  6. drinknectar

    Thanks everyone for the comments. Our affair with wine is a passionate one.

    Seattle Wine Gal – Good luck with your man

    Randy – I agree, there is a story behind the bottle and I hope to hear yours in person some day.

  7. 1winedude

    Yes! Do not fear the public love-letter!!


  8. Lisa Kaley

    Josh – WOW…I had no idea. Knowing you both makes this story mean even more. I can tell you are both very happy. Keep discovering and enjoying good wine together!

  9. growingthegrabners

    josh, this is such a wonderful story! thanks so much for sharing. like randy i was instantly involved in this entry from the get-go. there *is* so much more to a wine than just the flavor, mouth feel, food pairing, etc. thanks for setting such a poignant standard as greg and i begin our own wine blogging journey :)


    1. drinknectar

      Victoria and Greg – thanks so much! I look forward to seeing more from you guys!


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