I want to be a Wine Snob. I want to be able to tell from the color and aroma in my glass that it’s going to be good or bad. I want to know right away which bottle to serve with my chicken, my fish, or my aperitifs.
But wine is expensive. Usually. So I’ve learned a few tricks to develop a taste for good wines. This won’t do if you’re in a hurry to learn about wine. And by no means is this the only, or even the best way, to learn. But for myself, I’ve enjoyed taking this route.
First, I allow myself a small wine budget. Originally it started out at about $10 or $15/month. It’s not much, but remember: you’re not a Wine Snob yet. Find a flavor you are interested in, and give it a try. Once you find a flavor you like, then buy a more expensive label.
Second, find a store in the area that caters to wine drinkers. They have informative cards that detail information about the kind of information you’re looking for: where and when it’s made, what foods it pairs with, what to expect from its taste and aroma. Some regular stores are starting to do this; but you can also find local wine tasting shops that offer the information.
Third, it’s always fun to schedule a wine tasting at a local wine shop or even a winery if you live close enough. For a very nominal fee, they offer information and a great afternoon experience.
I’d like to get a book like “Wine Tasting for Dummies” or something similar. There are plenty of books that assume you already know the language. Find something easy and introductory. It’s not only informative, it’s fun!
Ask your friends what they like. Ask your waiter what he recommends. Don’t be afraid to experiment. You’ll come across some flavors you don’t care for. I recently discovered that I prefer a lighter wine than the full bodied Syrah. You’ll find ones that will always be your favorite.
What tips do you have for becoming a wine snob?
And Frankly, My Dear… that’s all she wrote!