Wine Buying Tips
Helpful Tips to Get the Most out of Your Wine Buying Experience
(As seen in VINO Magazine Spring 2013 Edition)
VIEW ARTICLE ONLINE HERE (page 32)
Buying wine is on the list of favorite things to do in Paso Robles. There are hundreds of amazing wine producers, so it can be convenient to visit a winery or tasting room in order to make your wine purchases.
Wine tasting trips are not always an option though and in that case purchasing wine at a wine shop is the next best thing. It can be exciting to visit a wine shop filled with bottles of wine made in Paso Robles. At a local wine shop you are sure to find a selection of local as well as international wines.
For the next time you visit a wine shop, here are a few helpful tips to get the most out of your wine buying experience.
With all the choices on the shelves of the wine shops, selecting the right bottle could seem a little overwhelming. There are some questions to ask: Are you just browsing, looking for a birthday present, choosing a bottle for dinner or taking wine to a dinner party?
Maybe you’re decided to buy a bottle of viognier, the white grape varietal you’ve heard so much about or tasted at a winery last week. When looking for specific wine varietals, producers or styles, knowing the layout of the shop can be very helpful. You may notice the wines are categorized by varietal, region or type of wine.
Knowing what you’re looking for, getting a feel for the layout of the shop and asking for assistance is useful when in a wine shop.
Be direct and let the sales associate know what you’re looking for, whether it is exact or not. Most wine shops have knowledgeable staff members who know a lot about wine and are very familiar with the wines they have for sale. You may feel comfortable enough asking to taste a particular wine or signing up for events that take place in the wine shop. I suggest taking advantage of all the wine shop has to offer such as in-store wine tastings, meet and greets with the winemaker, food and wine pairing seminars for example.
These types of educational activities can help to increase your confidence level when purchasing wine in a wine shop. The more you know about wine and what types of wine you enjoy, the more at ease you will be when purchasing.
Additional tips are to look for clues about the wine like individual tags or signs that have descriptions of the wine. It is popular to use your smartphone to look up the winery’s website to learn more about that particular blend or vintage. In addition to wine notes, some wine shops may post wine scores, which may help you in deciding which wine to choose. Using your wine knowledge and learning about wine from other sources such as classes, tastings and wine experts can aid in getting the most out of your wine purchasing experiences.
Now that I have shared some tips with you I encourage you to further expand your wine knowledge. Learn from all of your wine tasting experiences whether they are in a tasting room, wine shop, or at home with the bottle of viognier you just bought.
Purchasing wine from a wine shop to host your own wine tasting, or attending wine maker dinners at local restaurants or wineries are all great ways to continue learning about wine and most importantly learning what you enjoy about wine. All of these exciting experiences begin with the purchase of a bottle of wine. I hope these tips are helpful to you in your next wine purchasing experience.