One of my favorite things to do after work is to walk into a wine store in my neighborhood and look for a bottle of delicious vino. The fresh wood smell, the clinking of the glimmering bottles, and the usually friendly store owners create a wonderful and surprisingly relaxing experience. But with the growing industry of wine, stores now have more and more bottles in stock. Everyone, including myself, has stood in a wine store and just felt that heavy feeling of being overwhelmed. You walk through isles and isles of wine acting like you know what you are doing but not actually knowing what to look for. This is a common problem that most wine lovers experience. Here is a list of five steps to help you buy wine like a pro:
1) Spend anywhere between $13-$30 – With this price range, it is very, very hard to find wine that is totally undrinkable. This range will allow you to experience a drinkable wine, while helping to determine what you like and don’t like about certain wines. For those knew in the “wine world”, spending over $30 for an unknown wine might not be worth it and spending under $13 makes it more difficult to buy an outstanding wine. Those who are experienced with wine can go into a store and pay $8 for a delicious bottle, but until you start to understand what you like and don’t like, stick to this price range.
2) Do not be afraid to ask workers at the store – Store owners or workers usually know a lot about wine. And almost all love to talk about wine. So it is totally ok to walk into a store and say, “I don’t know much about wine. I am looking for a red (or white) wine between this price range. Can you help me please?” Usually the workers will provide you with a few recommendations that are popular within their store. You usually cannot really go wrong with their recommendations.
3) Do some research beforehand – Before walking into the store, do some personal research. Find out a country of the wine world that you would like to try. Google what is the popular wines in the country of your choosing and read about them. Having more knowledge about which wine region you would like to try is always helpful.
4) Use the app Vivino – Vivino is an app that takes a picture of the label on the bottle and analyzes it. Usually taking 30 seconds to 1 minute, the app with pull up ratings of the wine by other users (scale to 1-5), provide a description and region of the bottle, and even provide the average price. A rating 3.2 and above is usually a very solid bottle. Any rating that is above 4.0, buy it because that is rare. Vivino can help you not only buy a bottle in confidence, but also understand what to expect taste wise.
5) Look at the wine label – If all else fails, choosing your bottle of wine based on the label is totally acceptable. A cool wine label sticks out and helps peak one’s interest. I always love the labels with old time soldiers, and whenever I see one, I tend to always feel the urge to buy it. Along with the cool design on the front of the bottle, read the back of the label. Reading about the wine description can help you understand and appreciate the taste.
The Guy’s Grape
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