amateur detective

Merdle, of course, as all ye readers of “Blackbird Fly” recall, is the five Bennett sisters’ nickname for the middle sister, Merle. Heroine, bien sur, of my very own, “Blackbird Fly.

It has come to my attention, via the eagle eye of Madame Helen, my French teacher amie, that there is such a wine as “Middle Sister,” out of the vast vineyards of our beloved California. Not France where we last spied Merle Bennett, pouring black oak Cahors wine for tourists. But here on the almost-west coast where Helen found me a bottle of Middle Sister Rebel Red table wine before she did her own bon voyage to France. (Not to envy too much, she went with teenagers. Lots of them.) But it also came to our — Helen and me — attention that we too are both middle sisters and so a brand was found and adored! I may wait to crack the cork when Helen comes back from France. God knows she’ll need a chillax or two then. In the meantime I’m going to rustle up some of this great New Mexican (yes! believe it!) bubbly I read about in the New York Times, Gruet a la Albuquerque. Stranger things have rarely been heard, but I’m sold! And off to see if a local store might carry such a delight. Because there is very little Madame Helen likes more than a flute of Champagne.

Before you run off to the liquor store (put down your car keys!) you should know even if you’re not a Middle Sister there is a wine for you: Wicked White, Drama Queen, Smarty Pants, and more. All right, grab your keys. But read this, because it’s funny. The ad line for Rebel Red: “Did you know that birth order is commonly believed to have a profound and lasting effect on psychological development? And that the middle sister has a greater chance of having a special wine named just for her? A sassy blend of our three favorite red varieties perfect for sipping before, during and after our favorite family meals. Some people are just born lucky. Now give me back my blouse.”