There are wine pairings for just about everything these days. Potato chips? Check. Songs? Yep. Halloween candy? You bet. Your Fucked-up Feelings? Yes, and you’re welcome. However, there’s still one realm that is sorely lacking within the canon of wine pairing suggestions. Trigger warning: I’m talking about firearms. Before you indignantly declare that combining guns and booze is a safety hazard, let me remind you that in the great state of Texas, there are stores that sell both guns and liquor. Case closed.
While it may be a bad idea to actually drink wine whilst wielding a deadly firearm, there’s no denying that guns—like wines—have their own personalities. You wouldn’t want to embarrass yourself by ordering the wrong vintage with your Glock down at the Double Shot Liquor & Guns drive-thru, now would you? Enough said. Let’s get this thing out of the holster.
PAT GARRETT’S COLT SINGLE ACTION ARMY REVOLVER
Good ol’ Pat G. used this very Colt revolver to finish off notorious outlaw Billy the Kid in 1881, which makes it a major score for collectors. Drawing a bid of more than $6 million in 2021, this trophy gun is the most expensive firearm ever sold at auction. For 6 million clams you should just about be able to bring Billy back from the dead and shoot him yourself.
Wine pairing: A sought-after gun calls for an equally hard-to-get wine. Enter Screaming Eagle Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. A bottle of this California cult wine once sold at auction for half a million bucks, and it’s still among the state’s priciest bottles. You can’t just walk into a wine shop and buy the latest vintage, even if you have the dough. Instead, you need to join the winery’s allocation list and then wait years for the demise of some douchebag who joined before you. The guys—hey, fancy cars aren’t the only way to compensate—that collect such bottles never actually plan on drinking the contents, yet they’re not about to give up their trophies to the likes of you. You’ll have to pry that Screaming Eagle from their cold, dead hands.
As cool as the name sounds, ghost guns are not weapons used by murderous poltergeists. They are, in fact, guns sold online in kit form (some assembly required). Because they were not, until recently, officially classified as firearms, they weren’t subject to standard gun regulations. Translation: No serial numbers, no background checks needed. That made ghost guns the weapon of choice for rebels and bad-boys. In other words: criminals, convicted felons and domestic abusers. In 2017, law enforcement recovered 1,600 ghost guns from crime scenes across the country; in 2021, that number shot up to 19,000. Baby, these guns were born to break the rules, and outlaws (and maybe ghosts) want in.
Wine pairing: Did you know that in many European countries, winemakers are limited to growing only certain grape varieties approved by The Man? That’s right. If you’re a vintner in Burgundy, you’d better not even think about planting anything other than motherfucking Pinot Noir, Gamay, Chardonnay or Aligoté. The penalty for dissent is death. Here in America, wineries can grow any grapes they damn well please anywhere they like, then blend them together in any weird combination that strikes their fancy. That, my friends, is called Freedom. In that spirit, ghost gun enthusiasts should reach for a bottle of Teutonic Red from Oregon’s Willamette Valley, a tradition-be-damned blend of 80% Gewürztraminer and 20% Pinot Noir. If you’re feeling extra rebellious, why not mix in some Tempranillo and Fiano you’ve got lying around the house, and add an ice cube just for kicks? Bite me, AOC laws!
Capable of firing 30 or more bullets in mere seconds, this military-style weapon can blast apart a human skull or a vital organ with a single shot—which makes it the perfect choice for civilian uses like hunting squirrels and tin-can target practice. We Americans didn’t always have god-given unfettered access to the AR-15. In 1994, President Clinton’s assault weapons ban took it off the market and limited high-capacity magazines. Mass shootings decreased in the decade to follow, sure, but whatever happened to all-American fun? The ban expired in 2004, and now, through the efforts of, ahem, patriots like Gov. Greg Abbott and Wayne LaPierre, the AR-15 may soon become mandatory issue for all Americans at the time of birth. USA! USA! USA!
Wine pairing: This all-purpose weapon calls for a versatile wine that goes with everything. That means bubbles. Yeah, I know, that sounds like pussy wine, but hear me out: The staggering pressure built up inside a bottle of Champagne propels the cork from the neck at speeds of up to 25 miles per hour—which could easily put out an eye when pointed in the right direction! Ka-POW, bitch!