" But if the dinner, though excellent in itself, was mainly restorative, the wine was ambrosial. In the household of her early youth, in Cracow, Sophie had grown up with wine, her father having, possessed as strain of hedonism which caused him to insist (in a country as barren of vineyards as Montana) that her mother's ample and often elegant Viennese meals be accompanied with some regularity by the fines wines of Autria and the Hungarian plains. But the war, wich had swept so much else out of her life, had obligarated such a simple pleasure as wine, and since then she had not bothered to go out of her way to drink any, even if she had been tempted to within the purlieus of Flatbush, its constituency pledged to Mogen David. But she had no notion of this - this god's liquor! The bottle Nathan brought was of such a quality as to make Sophie want to redefine the nature of taste ; ignorant of the mystique of French wine, she did not need to be told by Nathan that is was a Château-Margaux, or that it was a 1937 - the last of the great prewar vintages - or that it cost the flabbergasting sum of fourteen dollars (roughly half her salary for a week, she noted with incredulity as she caught a glimpse of the price on the sticker), or that it might have gained in bouquet had there been time to decant it first. Nathan went on and on divertingly about such matters. But she only knew that the savor of it gave her an unparalleled sens of delight, a luscious and reckless and great-hearted warmth that spread downward to her toes, validating all quaint and ancient maxims as to the healing properties of wine. Light-headed, woozy, she heard herself say to her provider toward the end of the meal :
- You know, when you live a good life like a saint and die, that must be what they make you to drink in paradise "
Sophie's choice William Styron pages 167-168 vintage Classics