The Daily Telegraph

Judith Woods

Husbands get Mother’s Day wrong w



Moderate drinking slashes the risk of heart attack and stroke. Hurrah! Who wouldn’t want to toast that? But with what? Scientists say no more than a small glass of wine.

That’s all well and good, but I’m honestly not sure what constitute­s small any more. In Next, small is large, in Whistles large is small, and I discovered just last week in Zara that I’m an XS and an L all at once.

“Small” is a terribly subjective gauge, and not just on the high street. A small donation can be quite big, and a smallholdi­ng can be small or small-small.

My wine glasses could fit a small kitten; or a large amount of Meursault. I guess that means I need some new, scientific­ally calibrated ones. Or just nasty little pub glasses.

Do I have to become the sort of mean-spirited hostess who keeps a metal wine measure in a kitchen drawer? Good wine, like good conversati­on, ought to flow. By contrast, “moderation” is such a killjoy concept.

We are not a moderate society. Our immoderate waistlines and sedentary enslavemen­t by technology bear testament to that, so I can’t see moderate drinking taking off any time soon. Unless, that is, we switch to awful wine? I mean, we used to neck nothing but awful wine. See how les rosbifs applauded the arrival of Beaujolais Nouveau, a vin primeur so young it could not legally drink itself.

Nor was any Sunday lunch complete without a Black Tower or a cheeky Blue Nun on the table – and in my abstemious household, a single bottle could be eked out for three weeks.

As I don’t care for red wine, these days a solitary slosh can easily last me a night, if not an entire weekend, if there’s no alternativ­e. I should probably order that in future then. Sigh.

A little of what you fancy does you good. I wonder if the same applies to a little of what you don’t fancy?

‘I can’t see moderate drinking taking off unless we switch back to awful wine’

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