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Wine Men of Gotham Barossa Shiraz 2008

by Nannette Eaton on February 9, 2011

Tell me no more of Gotham fools,
Or of their eels in little pools,
Which they were told were drowning;
Nor of their carts drawn up on high,
When King John’s men were standing by,
To keep a wood from browning.

Nor of their cheese shoved down the hill,
Nor of a cuckoo sitting still,
While it they hedged round;
Such tales of them have long been told,
By prating boobies, young and old,
In drunken circles crowned.


The fools are those who thither go
To see the cuckoo bush, I trow,
The wood, the barn, and pools;
For such are seen both here and there,
And passed by without a sneer
By all but errant fools.

The story of Wine Men of Gotham originates from an old English story about villagers outwitting King John.  The King was going to travel through Gotham in Nottinghamshire, England.  As any road that the King traveled on became a public road, the villagers refused passage to the King. Angered, the King sent his men to Gotham to discover the meaning of the rudeness, and planned to tax or fine the villagers for their disrespect. When the King’s men arrived, they found the villagers doing all sorts of nonsensical tasks, and when questioned about their behavior they answered in gibberish. The King’s men decided the village was full of idiots and madmen, and left without punishing the citizens. In such manner, having outwitted the King, the villagers became known as the wise fools of Gotham or the wise men of Gotham.

How New York became known as Gotham was due to the writer, Washington Irving. Gotham was synonymous with stupidity and foolishness (even though the story actually shows cunning and cleverness on the part of the villagers of Gotham) Irving used the nickname for New York in this popular satire magazine Salmagundi to depict the city he thought was inhabited with lunatics and fools, street-smart idiots with a method to their madness.

Gotham Wines are owned by Australians who have a great fondness for New York. Researching the moniker Gotham, they found a great story, and with a method to their madness, are creating great wines for wise fools the world over.

Wine Men of Gotham Barossa Shiraz 2008 has flavors of blackberry, boysenberry and plum with lovely notes of black pepper and mocha, with a finish that goes on for days.  The perfect pairing is beef, we’ve selected Roast Beef Tenderloin Wrapped in Bacon.

The details:  13.9% alcohol.  Screw-cap closure. Varietal: shiraz. Appellation: McLaren Vale (blended with Langhorne Creek and Fleurieu Penninsula). The suggested retail is $12 USD, word on the street is that Wise Men of Gotham is being sold at price points of nearly $25 at some retailers, but those wine fools at the San Diego Wine Co. are selling it for $7 USD. At that price, the Wine Harlots say it’s foolish not to stock up!  For a list of distributors in your area, check the Gotham Wines website. This was a media sample generously provided by Gotham Wines and Savage Vine.

The music match is “Wise Up” by Aimee Mann from the soundtrack from the movie Magnolia. You’d be a fool not to wise up and buy a case of Wine Men of Gotham.