Go To Page #1  #2   #3  #4   #5  #6   #7  #8   #9  #10   #11  #12

Zin Avenger LOGO

Awakenings Chapter 7: Awakenings, Page 4

It was Joe’s luck that these three Chinese gentlemen then came right up to his table to sample his wines.  Joe smiled, “which would you like to me to pour first?”

One of the Chinese gentlemen looked over at the senior of his group and spoke in Chinese, translating Joe’s question.  After the response, he looked at Joe and smiled, “we would like to try your Zinfandel please”. 

Joe poured his gold medal winning Zinfandel into the three glasses held by the Chinese gentlemen.  After pouring, the image of the glasses being held burned into Joe’s head.  With a shock, Joe realized that one of the Chinese was missing parts of two fingers on his right hand!  Like the image of the hand pulling luggage off of an airport luggage carousel this morning!  Joe felt momentarily dizzy.  The limousines with the diplomatic plates, the hand missing fingers, what did this all mean?  The Chinese entourage left and at that moment Elise stepped behind the table to help pour wine.

“Are you alright Joe?  You look kind of pale. Those Chinese guys are kind of creepy.”

“I think I need to eat something.  How are the hor’dourves?”

“They are going fast, you better get some.”

“Do you mind pouring for a while so that I can eat and sample some of the wines?”

Elise smiled and answered with a quick kiss, “Enjoy.”

 Joe heaped goodies on a small paper plate at one of the hor’dourve tables and wandered, sampling wines.  Joe had lived in the area his whole life and almost everybody knew Joe and wanted to chit chat.  There were a lot of hushed conversations about the Chinese group.

Joe finally worked his way over to the Etoile Rouge table and held out his glass.  “Hi Ed, may I try your new label Zin?  I didn’t know that the De Marco Winery grew much Zin.”

“Not yet, but as I told you earlier, the Fairchild Group just paid for us to put in 100 – acres”

“All in one shot?  Most growers around here are putting in no more than 5 acres a year”

“They are convinced that there is large upcoming market for Zin.  Their business people say that Zin is the next big wine.”

Joe swirled the Zin around in his glass and sniffed the bouquet, which mixed with faint gasoline fumes from the motors next door.  “I am going to have to diplomatically complain about the fair putting us next t o the antique motors this year.  This has ruined my sense of smell for this evening”.

Ed nodded his head in agreement. “Those Chinese gentlemen were at the Etoile Rouge Winery this afternoon with one of the managers of the Fairchild Group.  It was kind of weird; they were definitely treating her like an employee”.

“Well, the Chinese have some unusual twists in their culture”.  Joe rolled some of the Zin on his tongue and sucked air through the wine.  “Where are these grapes from?”

“The Fairchild Group bought them from somewhere east of Fresno last year.  You ought to come up to the winery and see the expansion; they added a metal building and another 40,000 gallons of capacity.  The wine was already in the tanks when they hired me, so I never saw the grapes.  They also brought the winemaker in from Fresno.”

Continued ...