We find ourselves at the grocery store analyzing bottles, looking for the coolest label, the oldest vintage, or some of us don’t care what-so-ever and just pick the cheapest one we can find. All of this comes down to marketing, which means everything. There are a myriad of differences in the wine world that define or signify good wine, most of which come from the vintner (winemaker) or the wineries themselves. Each winery has a different story of how they do things and why they are better than everyone else. Myths in wine have risen out of the creative marketing and the stories each winery will tell about their product, but others come straight out of the bottle. There are a series of misnomers and rather dimwitted myths out there that can lead people to the wrong conclusions about wine and wine knowledge in general.
When I first fell in love with wine it was a pinot noir from the central coast of California, Rusack Winery in Santa Ynez Valley. It was unlike anything I have ever tasted. I used to hate wine, it was too sweet, and I like most boys at the ripe drinking age of 22 was drinking beer, whiskey, and tequila. I barely exposed myself to wine before this. I had my preconceived notions about wine and I tended to stick to my cabernet sauvignon. And yet, this Rusack pinot changed my entire perspective. It opened a world into good, enjoyable wine and now I see that every wine is a new adventure and something new to experience. I became obsessed with finding new wines to try and change my alter my perception further. One of these was the Italian grape Barbera, another wine that thoroughly surprised me, catapulting itself to the top of my favorites list. We all remember the wine that made us fall in love with wine, it may have been chardonnay, cabernet sauvignon, rose, or even Riesling. However, I have found with most of my friends and family, that once they fall in love with one type of wine that’s all they’ll ever drink. I will say there is no problem with that, people like their comfort zones especially when it comes to booze. Yet, there are over a thousand different grape varietals in this world just waiting for us to try them. Why limit yourself to just a small few? Here are some suggestions that will help get you out of your comfort zone:
Pinot Noir, oh pinot noir, how much I love thee. A lot. I have to say that of all the hundreds of different red wine varieties out there, pinot noir is one of my all-time favorites. It’s not just because of its elegance and it is one of the most romanticized wines out there, it’s because of its versatility. Pinot noir is a pain in the ass to grow, but when done right, boy oh boy, is it a beautiful thing. I have had the privilege of enjoying a myriad of different pinots and almost every one of them has had its own unique profile. I have had pinots that are grown right across the street from one another and each tasted completely different. It’s a wine that can be described as fruity, earthy, acidic, floral, austere, dry, light, full-bodied, effeminate, minerally, aromatic, etc. There is a pinot for every category of style. It is also one among a very small number of red wines that can pair well with just about everything from fish to meats to sweets. It’s the perfect wine to bring to a dinner party, for a date, for sipping, for chugging, for any occasion. I simply love pinot.
It is that time of year again. That time when we stand upon our scales to scoff and cry then make the plans for a “new you,” well at least until February. The two things people concentrate the most on this time of year to help are dieting and cleanses. Most of these include not drinking for a period of time, however, we all know that everyone cheats. Friends still want to go out and have fun and sometimes you just don’t want to be the sober one, which is completely understandable and diet Jesus will forgive you. One thing people don’t realize there are actually ways to drink without interfering with your diet. The biggest issue with diets and drinking comes from the sugars that these beverages have, and yes, there are ways to drink guilt-free. Here are some tips: