Are You a Reveler or a Keeper?

June 4, 2007

Wine can say a lot about a person. What they choose, how they serve it, do they slurp or swirl (or both). But I’ve found that perhaps the greatest divide between wine types lies in the response to the question, “should I open this bottle now or hold on to it for a few more years?” Consider . . .

The Keepers. There are those who live to cellar wine (hmmm hmmm, Christopher). For them, much of the appreciation lies in the anticipation of what is yet to come; the promise, in a sense, is the payoff. Keepers carefully choose wines based not on what they taste in the moment, but for the structure, balance and fruit that will develop into something of mystery and character years down the road.

Keepers are a unique marriage of wholesome and high stakes. The sheer enjoyment they get from nurturing their wines contrasts with the rush derived from betting that the future will be better than today. Both of these qualities make for an almost hallowed moment for the Keepers when a cork is finally pulled.

The Revelers. These are people of the moment. To them, every occasion—life itself—is a celebration. Revelers tend to view wine more as a connective lubricant than a sacred elixir. A friend stops by, a cork is pulled. Cousin Mary calls to say she’s pregnant, a cork is pulled. Your husband just got home from work, a cork is pulled.

To the Revelers, wine makes each moment a more enjoyable place to be—especially when other people are involved. It isn’t that Revelers don’t appreciate the quality and craftsmanship of a good aged wine, they do. They just want to share it . . . with everyone . . . right now. Which is why we want to be around them . . . all the time.

So, here’s my question. Are you a keeper or a reveler?


10 Responses to “Are You a Reveler or a Keeper?”

  1. Maureen Says:

    I’m definately a reveler. My husband and I look forward to wine every night. When I buy a new wine, I get so excited to try it when I get home, that sometimes it’s hard to wait until dinner time. πŸ™‚ If we are not sharing with anyone else, we enjoy guessing which of our family or friends would enjoy that bottle the most.

    Life is to short. We need to celebrate every night that we have life, love, and fabulous food and wine.

  2. lia Says:

    Well said Maureen! I love how you vicariously bring people you love into your experience by thinking about who would enjoy a particular bottle. What a cool thing to do. I think I’ll give that a try tonight . . .

  3. Cauliflower Puree Says:

    Think I am a “keeper-aspiring-to-be-reveler”. not with every wine but just with those that are more pricey or purchased with specific memories (while on vacation, etc.) Definitely do over think when to finally open a treasured bottle and my husband often has to push me to go for it! I mean, half the time, I worry about whether the meal is good enough for the wine! Happy to say that we did last night (with my better half’s persuasive skills) and enjoyed a 2001 Granges de Pere from Languedoc over a home-cooked meal. It was well-worth it!

  4. lia Says:

    I’m glad to hear the reveling turned out to be a good thing last night, Limeng! I’m with you though, I have a hard time opening bottles that have special ‘meaning’. We’ll often pull them out, look at them, wax nostalgic over when we bought it (“Do you remember those swallows divebombing the vineyard that day? And how amazing those ravioli were you had at lunch afterwards?”) and then tuck it back away. Hmmm . . . I think I may put out a “revel challenge” here in the near future. πŸ˜‰

  5. Richard Says:

    Down here in Texas we just go to the store and squeeze us some grapes and then pour moonshine in it. We call it a young, fruity wine with a little after-burner. It won’t keep for long, burns through glass if exposed too long, but boy do people revel when they drink it.

  6. lia Says:

    You know, you hear all about those “Texas Rebels,” when in fact the phrase started out as “Texas Revels.” It’s just that everyone had drunk so much of that moonshine mix they slurred. πŸ˜‰

  7. Julie Breaux Says:


    Since Louisiana and Texas aren’t that far apart, we apparently have similar philosiphies regarding wine drinking. We definitely tend to be revelers because as my friend Marilyn puts it “Let’s face it, a $10 bottle of wine isn’t getting any better than it is right now, so pop the cork”!!


  8. lia Says:

    Love you Southerners! πŸ˜‰


  9. gabbyh Says:

    We are definitely revelers…my husband is an Aussie, how could I be anything else ;-} I never drank wine until I met him; I was in my 40’s…after my first trip to Oz I was hooked, and for my 50th, he bought me a wine fridge! The only “keeper” in me comes from 3 bottles left out of a case of a wonderful SB from Brooklin Valley Winery located in the Margaret River Region of Western Australia.
    Great blog!

  10. […] can understand where both sides are coming from (and I actually see a correlation with keepers and revelers), but I have to admit to being someone who thinks wine and life (and family) go hand in […]

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