President Mel’s wine tasting orgy last night was the most fun any of us have ever had sitting down. Eleven wine connoisseurs – or wine drinkers at least – assembled at his Haig St tower’s function room to blindly recognise four wines ($16.99 to an extravagant $26.99) and train their pallets towards subtle but accurate discriminations. 
Mel (with Jill, pic left) made conscientious use of the room’s white-board matrix to track our judgements or lack thereof.
The contest was won by winos Jill deSomething and her better half Neil Bêche-de-mer (could someone check spellings please?) with a perfect score of 4/4. One of our many “Julies” plumbed the lowest score of  0/4 – no surnames no ignominy. 
Organisation by Mel was superb. Wine bottles were cloaked in brown paper bags and decanted into glasses via a strange apparatus which we were told fully aerated the wines before we tossed them down pell-mell. The night’s highlight was “The Grand Reveal” when bags came off and full-frontal naked labels revealed Santa Margherita Chianti Classico, The Siding Cab-sav, Tar & Roses Sangiovese and with 15.4% alcohol (hence the rising noise level), Whitebox Shiraz.
Best line  - wine-irrelevant - was from one of our ex-nurses who disclosed that on her first night as ward nurse some time back, three patients died. Not cause and effect, she insisted.

After debate we decided to make these tastings a six-weekly event. Thanks again to our sommelier Mel (and Pam for the cheesy platters).
Left: Winners Neil and Jill. Prize: One bottle of Barossa Pearl.