Monday, 5 March 2012

T'ga Za Jug

I got used to drinking wine out of tumblers because of a Spanish restaurant I used to frequent while living in Germany. Conveniently, the restaurant - Lizarran - lent a touch of class to the fact that my first, sparsely furnished German kitchen had me drinking wine out of old mugs from the Christmas market until I could start earning a better salary. 

Now, whenever I'm enjoying one, indulgent, weeknight glass of wine, I prefer to drink it out of a tumbler. 

Drinking wine this way makes it a little more casual and relaxing, somehow, and always makes me nostalgic for Bonn and old, wonderful friends. (Maria, amiga, te extraño!) For any special occasion, or just when we needed a night out, Lizarran became our go-to food and wine retreat. In the heart of Altstadt (city center), it was hip and atmospheric enough to make us feel like we were treating ourselves, while still fitting nicely within our junior professional budgets. It was often over tapas and tumblers that Maria would tutor me in Spanish, trying (in vain) to help me improve my accent and learn new words. To this day, the names of tapas are still what I understand and pronounce best in Spanish, despite Maria's best efforts to broaden my vocabulary! Nonetheless, I can attest to the fact that alcohol does magically enhance anyone's ability to speak a second language. 

Admittedly, it really doesn't take much to make me miss Bonn (and Maria), but some things pack more punch than others. Isn't it funny how something as simple as a tumbler can conjure up so many memories? Food and drink can be such powerful conduits that way. Like how a scent or taste can immediately transport you somewhere else. 

Ever the photo-tourists, here is Maria and me attempting to capture ourselves in Sardinia in April 2007.

When not drinking wine out of tumblers, we had our other obsession in hand: Latte Macchiatto!

Tonight, I finally cracked open the lovely little bottle of wine that Elena sent to me in my foodie care package from Macedonia. The wine is called T'ga Za Jug, and according to the internet gods, it means "longing for the south" in English and is named after a famous, Bulgarian poem by Konstantin Miladinov. Longing, you say? Something like nostalgia? And, interestingly enough, 'Konstantin' was the road (strasse) I first lived on in Bonn. Hmm. This Monday night glass of red is quite meant to be, don't you think? 

The wine is a deep purply-red and beautifully berry-rich. It paired wonderfully with my dinner (and my memories) tonight.

Yessir; a fine start to the week.

Thanks again, Elena!


  1. Woah! Sounds like you two had a fabulous time. :)

  2. You learned spanish? I d like to learn it, do u think it was difficult?

    Funny name for a wine. what a coincident with the name Konstantine.
    Hadnt known you had lived in germany. =)

    thanks for the share!

  3. "Nonetheless, I can attest to the fact that alcohol does magically enhance anyone's ability to speak a second language." Hehe.That is intriguing!;-)
    I have never been to Spain,or tried much Spanish food.There are hardly any Spanish restaurants here in India,unfortunately.Your post evokes my interest in Spanish cooking once again,after a while!
    Thank you for sharing your memory lane with us!:-)

  4. Lovely post, Aimee! Nothing like alcohol to get one all nostalgic! Mucho Besos! xx