If you didn't know by now, Kevin Towers is a wine snob. I heard a story recently, from a member of the davidlizerblog posse, about Ryan Klesko trying to name drop some wines at a club downtown to impress the ladies. I decided to further investigate the Padres and their collective love of wine. I came across this old article on Wine Spectator Online. It breaks down what a Wine Snob Towers is, but also outs Bochy, Hoffman, Klesko, and Dave Magadan.
"Quintessa is my lucky wine. In '98 when we played the Braves [in the National League Championship Series], I bought a bottle of Quintessa to share with my wife at a steak house in Atlanta called Bones. We won that night, so we went back the next night and had another bottle, and we won," he says. Never ones to mess with a winning streak, Towers and his wife returned before the game that sent the Padres to the World Series. "If I see Quintessa on a wine list, I usually grab it."
Uh oh, everybody else is being outted...
Towers' love of wine is shared by many in baseball, and especially within his franchise. Padres manager Bruce Bochy is a wine drinker. Slugger Ryan Klesko regularly brings his own wine on the team's charter flights. Closer Trevor Hoffman and Towers have established a wine tradition.
"Every spring training, we go out to Morton's or Ruth's Chris," Towers says. "We'll share a couple bottles of wine, smoke a couple cigars, and talk about spring training. I always really look forward to that."
There's always someone to talk wine with in the Pads' clubhouse. When some coaches were talking wine in their locker room, hitting coach Dave Magadan--razor in hand, his face half covered in shaving cream--poked his head out to say that he is a Wine Spectator subscriber.
The article goes on to describe their wine experience during dinner after a spring training game:
The second wine of the evening, the Pian dell'Orino Toscana 1997, forges a delightful pairing with Towers' steak. He and Kelley talk their way through the wine, identifying the strawberry notes characteristic of the Sangiovese grape. By the end of the meal, he is in tune with the subtleties of the two Italian bottlings.
I wish this was a joke... I think I'm gonna puke.