Babies Like Wine Too

Doesn’t it seem like their is an attitude of zero tolerance for the idea of placing minors even in the very proximity of alcohol?

Many schools will send a child home or make them wear a school sweatshirt if they come to class with wearing winery schwag. We are constantly told that if any amount of alcohol hits the lips of a person under 21 they will die a terrible death and take others with them. Hell, the very idea that a minor looks at an advertisement for alcohol seems to set off some people.

I’ve long held that a minor’s solid, responsible introduction to and education in the merits and downside of alcohol is a good thing. I’ve tried to do just this with my children. Interestingly, my son LOVES to sip and try wines at the dinner table or when we just open a bottle to drink. He’s 14. My daughter simply hates the taste of alcohol.

Nevertheless, there does exist in this society a seeming zero tolerance when it comes to minors and alcohol.

That’s why I like what Tyler Colman over at is doing with his "Kids At Wineries" Photo Contest. It’s subversive. It’s fun. And it sends the message that children won’t shrivel up into little balls of goo if they get close to wine.


I recommend you go over there and check out the cut baby shots. Vote. Be Subversive.

5 Responses

  1. Fredric Koeppel - October 2, 2007

    Right on. My first wife and I gave our children their first sips of wine, diluted with a little water, when they were about 14. Over the years, they graduated to half a glass of wine with dinner a few days a week. And we always talked about the wine: where it came from, what the grapes were, how it was made. And while they didn’t elect to become especially knowledgeable, they’re very comfortable with wine choosing and drinking today.

  2. Terry Hughes - October 2, 2007

    That’s Koeppel on the high road.
    Consider this: when a Jewish boy is circumcised the mohel ( = cutter) typically wets a piece of gauze with a bunch of sweet kosher wine and sticks it in the kid’s mouth as soon as the snipping’s done. Off to dreamland. Minimal shrieking. Then everyone can feast on egg salad and whitefish in peace. Except for the mother’s sobbing, of course.

  3. cellardiva - October 3, 2007

    My husband and I were so proud when our little girl uttered her first full sentence at Christmas “Can I have more Champagne please?”. We’re winemakers and she spent her first year and a half with me at the winery. I want her to respect wine and not abuse it. For her it’s about being like a grown-up, hopefully she’ll retain that as she grows up. Still it’ll be a while before she figures out that her “wine” is really wine flavored water.

  4. Randy - October 3, 2007

    I hadn’t really thought about it, but I always imagined that the best way to demystify alcohol and it’s lure at a later time is to make it no big deal when kids are young.

  5. Benito - October 3, 2007

    Speaking up for the younger generation of winer bloggers: When I was in high school (91-94), Dad started getting sampler cases of wine from the V. Sattui winery every year. My parents weren’t big wine drinkers, but I was interested in cooking and was allowed to grab bottles as needed for recipes. I never guzzled half a bottle and staggered drunk into the living room, but I’d generally enjoy a few sips of wine from a coffee cup while fixing dinner.
    When I was 19 I got to go to a few wine tastings and then spent three weeks in Italy where I got to enjoy local wine with practically every meal. The end result? During college I had no desire to engage in drinking for the sake of getting drunk. I really didn’t like the taste of cheap beer, and if someone of legal age was doing a liquor store run I’d invariably ask for a Washington State Riesling (hey, we all go through a sweet wine phase early on), and I’d give a list of substitutes in case my beloved Hogue was sold out.
    In the meantime I watched those around me drink utter swill to the point of stupidity, violence, or vomiting… Their loss, I suppose.

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