imperfections would vanish, and no one would be able to tell the difference between his car and the BMW. “Go ahead and pour it at least,” the shorter man said to the bartender. “We have time.” “And one for our friend here,” the taller man added, turning on his stool and gesturing toward Griff. “No,” Griff said, even as the bartender slid a wine glass in front of him on a holiday napkin. “I’m not part of this. You’ve waited 25 years to open that bottle. The wine is for you two and Bill, not me” “It’s OK,” the taller man said. “Bill would insist. It’s Christmas.” “Besides,” the shorter man said, “when will you get another chance to drink a $5,000 bottle of wine?” The three men fell silent as the bartender poured. They watched the wine flow from the bottle’s lip, filling each glass in deep amber. Even after he had finished and set the bottle down, no one spoke; everyone’s eyes fixed on the glass before them. In the background, a lush orchestration of “Adeste Fideles” washed from the speakers. “I’ve never been nervous about pouring wine before,” the bartender said. The shorter man picked up his glass, swirled the wine, then held it to his nose, breathing deeply before setting it down.
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