Zen Breath 3-2-1

Note: You are receiving this email because you subscribed to my weekly 3-2-1 newsletter or you subscribed to the Koi Zen Cellars newsletter. Every Friday, I share 3 wine terms, 2 quotes from me, and 1 question for you to ponder. Occasionally, I also send out long-form articles on habits and self-improvement.

"Less is often more"

~ The Zen Winemaker ~

3 terms, 2 quotes, 1 question

August 6, 2021

Happy Friday! Time to wrap up this week and get ready for the next! Take a deep breath and kick off the weekend on a positive note. Let's consider where we have been, improve it, and move forward next week. Packing the most content into the least words and trying to change the world, one glass at a time.

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3 - Wine Terms - Too Much or Not Enough - Wine Balance

Last night I taught a class on Sensory Evaluation where we focused on identifying tastes from the tongue and how to use this skill in pairing foods and wines. The tongue is very limited in the number of things it can sense (sweet, sour, salty, bitter, umami). We also included alcohol which is not really a taste but a sensation of the mouth. To create a "Balanced Wine" three major components need to by in harmony.
  1. Acidity - acids in wine cause you to salivate creating a wetting sensation and make food and wine taste bright. Lemon juice is high in acidity - cream is low in acidity. A low acid wine tastes flat and flabby while an overly acidic wine is on the verge of tasting like battery acid.
  2. Tannins - tannins come from the grape stems, skins and seeds and cause a drying sensation. Excessive tannins will taste bitter and leave the palate overly parched and cotton mouthed. Wines (in respect to red wines - white wines have very little tannins in general) with a low tannic content will taste weak, watered down, and without any substance or interested - heading towards fruit juice.
  3. Alcohol - wines range in alcohol from about 8%-16% alcohol by volume or 16 to 32 proof. A wine with low alcohol will taste thin and weak, where a very high alcohol wine will taste hot or burning. When people refer to a "full bodied wine" it is one with an elevated alcohol content.
A balanced wine is one where each of these three components balance each other. An excellent wine not only balanced but these quality meld harmoniously together. Keep this in mind when you think about balance in your life - often there is an unobserved third element that is keeping you out of balance. For example: work, play and often the missing element is rest or restorative in nature. (Three legs on a stool make it stable)

2 - Quotes from Me:

1. "Be thankful for what you have for one day you will lose it." ~ The Zen Winemaker

2. "If you worry about losing something, then you have too much." ~ The Zen Winemaker

1 - Question to ponder:

What is Enough?

I just returned from Oahu with my daughter for a week and my suitcase is still full sitting on the floor in my bedroom. I tell myself that I'm too busy to empty it, but the truth is, I'm just lazy or maybe that suitcase reminds me of my wonderful trip with my daughter, or not, who knows - all I do know is it is filled with folded, clean and unworn clothes.
In fact, 90% of my suitcase is unworn - and I pack light.

Over the 6 days of vacation I was either in a bathing suit, shirt (1 of 2) and sandals, or shorts (1 pair), shirt and sandals.

Why did I bring two pairs of jeans and a pair of dress slacks, 3 button down shirts, 6 pairs of socks, 8 pairs of underwear (just in cases) and a slew of other tops, socks, and shoes? I don't know - maybe because I might need it - but in the VAST majority of trips I don't.

I have gotten better over the years and now my suitcase is half the weight it once was but still over packed.

The same thing happens at the kitchen sink. I prefer to wash dishes by hand, but every day there are a pile of forks, knives, plates, bowls, and glasses to address - the funny thing is it's just Lisa and Me in the house. I don't know why we always grab a fork from the drawer and not from the drying rack but that's what we do. Maybe because we have a full drawer of flatware, enough to serve 8, but we really only need a service for 2 - 99% of the time.

Is there a similarity between the suitcase and the pile of dishes? Probably. Same could be said for my attic, garage, closets, and dressers. Lots of stuff that is never used.

BC19 (before Covid-19) I enjoyed going to Deer Park Monastery on Sundays for a morning of meditation, reflection and walking in nature. Around 1pm they would serve a buffet lunch for 200-300 people.

On my first trip to the monastery I patiently stood in line for lunch. First you would grab a bowl, fork, and cup. After rice and veggies there were these square chunks that looked like some kind of meat, almost like a short ribs (not realizing it was a vegan meal) - I loaded up on these not realizing that they were tofu and mushrooms (two least favorite foods) . I tried to eat them but just couldn't get them down. After lunch people stood in line to wash their own dishes. I was towards the end of the line and eventually arrived at the wash station. First there was a bucket for food scraps. I bent to discard the food on my plate when i noticed the bucket was clean - not a scrap of food had been wasted (over 150 people ahead of me) and there I was with a half full plate of food - talk about excess and wasting too much. I was embarrassed and learned a valuable lesson about excess that day.

So I ask, what is enough?

Is it 5 different dish patterns with service for 16 each or a single bowl? What is enough of one person many not be enough for another - everyone is different. You decide on what you need, what you can donate and what you don't need.

Remember, we all live in a world with finite resources - everyone can't have everything.

What is your definition of enough or too much?

P.S. The picture is not my stuff and thanks to the original photographer.

~~ Notice ~~

Someone with nothing is never robbed



Darius Miller - The Zen Winemaker

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Author of a #1 best seller:
'The Zen Winemaker - Follow Your Dreams & Overcome Your Fears'

Creator of:

'The Zen Wine Tasting Journal - Life is too short to drink bad wine, or to wear ugly underwear.'

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