Sunday, 8 April 2012

The Ham of God?...

Whether you believe in His ultimate sacrifice to wash away our sins or the perfect long weekend to celebrate spring and start your gardening, Easter Weekend is up there with Christmas and Thanksgiving as a get-together with family and/or friends over a traditional meal.  As it comes to wine retail, it is a big weekend for people looking for the perfect wine to serve with their dinner. What interests me is that there is a clear divide over which is the classic Easter centrepiece protein: lamb or ham.
Unlike Thanksgiving (where turkey is the clear favourite) or Christmas (again, turkey is the general rule but ham and goose do appear on some tables), Easter "tradition" is split down the middle.  In a quick survey of both staff and customers at our store, there was a definate split over which is the prefered meat, and advocates for one or the other were equally passionate for why one and why not the other.  In recommending a wine for the table, however, be it lamb or ham the answer is still an easy one: Pinot Noir, especially one from Central Otago or Oregon. Light bodied with subtle fruit and easy tannin structure, the Pinot Noir is an easy crowd pleaser as it is light and approachable for fans of white wines and still rich enough for fans of reds.
In my opinion, lamb is the meat of Easter.  Fair enough that I don't eat pork, but even before I gave up the swine I still link Easter with a slow-roasted, rosemary-and-thyme crusted leg of lamb.  The reason for this is, surprisingly, Biblical. The way I see it is 2000 years ago in pastoral Palestine, lamb and goats were the protein staple of the locals, and I highly suspect that such a meat featured on the table of the Last Supper (I have no proof of this at my disposal, but I also suspect much wine was also served). To top things off, if I remember correctly, as a result of His sacrifice Jesus is refered to as the "Lamb of God." Therefore, should it not be in Judeo-Christian tradition that lamb be served on the day to celebrate His ascent to Heaven? I may be wrong on this point too, but I don't recall Jesus ever being refered to as the "Ham of God."
Amen to roast lamb and Pinot Noir!

1 comment:

  1. Well Dave, you would be correct in your guess about lamb (roasted lamb bone in fact) being present at the last supper. "Zeroa" (the roasted lamb bone) Is one of the six items on the seder plate which is served at the passover meal....which of course is the meal that was being served at the Last Supper.

    Your friendly neighborhood theologian friend

    Aka (TiPSI Dad)