Wine and Clay

Haut Clay

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Adding wine into the clay while it is aging is always a good idea. Of course any old vinegar would do just fine, but if you really want to be exotic, follow my example.

We have some very good friends, and cooking for them is a privilege. All of them bring wine when they visit, and they spoil us with good stuff. For those occasions we also try to get interesting wine, [with creative labels] which will work with what we are cooking. For our daily wine, Maureen and I drink at the very low end of the grape ladder, where smoke and mirrors are not necessary. Peasants we are!

Our idea of wine storage goes something like this, “do we have enough to last through the weekend?” So when good wine presents itself, we consume it with our friends immediately. If there is extra, we store it for one of “those” occasions. Some bottles get lost in the dark corners, and wait. I recently had a look at what I was storing, and thought…how silly. So we opened some, and of course it was vinegar…too bad.

Well, not if you are a potter who puts vinegar in his clay to help it age. I will be throwing pots this fall with the following vinegar in my clay…Saint Emilion Chateau Haut Simard 1985, Chateau Côtes de Castillon 2001, Beaune Premier Cru 1999, and Gevrey-Chambertin Vine de Bourgogne 2002. Haut clay!

To those that brought such fine wines…we should have had it with the BBQ’d little purse that was in the pizza oven…but we didn’t. Sorry.

I am a reformed collector of fine drink. If it looks good, now is a good time.

My porcelain clay has a hint of tobacco, with overtones of pencil shavings, French leather and barnyard cherry beams with a touch of smoke and mirrors. Work never smelled so good!


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