Finding the “best” wine is really going to revolve around your specific tastes and preferences. Here are some tips to help you pick the best wine for any occasion.
Things To Consider
Wine Is Very Diverse
Wine flavor profiles can vary wildly from the sweetest white wines to the driest red wines with everything in between.
Taste Attributes Are All Over The Place
Not only are you going to pick up different flavors in different wines, but you’re going to pick up different bitterness levels, different smokiness, hints of alcohol, and a whole host of other textures and smells that can change your wine experience.
High Prices Do Not Equal High Quality
Though you won’t find many world-class wine options at $10 price points some of the best wine around the world is very inexpensive. Expensive wine is usually more marketing than anything else.
There Is No Perfect Match
Don’t be shy about mixing different kinds of wine with different food. There are no real rules here.
There’s No Such Thing As Consistency
One wine vintage can taste completely different than another with absolutely zero changes other than what happened to the grapes as they were growing. Blends are more consistent, but even they can taste wildly different from one vintage to the next.
Pair Wine With Food When Possible
Full bodied wine (like Cabernet and Merlot) complement heavier dishes and more savory flavors, while fruity wines (like Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio) is best suited to lighter fare like fish.
Picking The Right Type
These wines are usually bigger in body, bolder in flavor, and significantly drier than their white wine cousins. Almost all red wine options get better with age. Expect some bitterness and anticipate a punch of flavor followed by more subtle after notes.
Champagne must come from the Champagne region of France to earn this designation. All other champagne like wine is considered sparkling wine, and many of the best options cost right around $10 or $15.
Much lighter across-the-board come a white wine is a lot less dry and consistently more sweet than most red wine options. They do not usually get better with age, and a bottle of white wine should be consumed entirely after it has been opened since it can oxidize rather quickly.
The Italian version of sparkling wine, this has a less bubbly body and usually is much softer and fruitier than traditional sparkling wine. Almost always a blend with no vintage.
High Prices Do Not Equate Great Wine
Finding excellent wine under $20 can be a challenge but isn’t impossible. Some of the best wine can be sold at just three dollars a bottle.
Shop Online When Possible
If you can purchase wine online you’ll almost always have access to more types, vintages, and varietals than you would have had otherwise.
Case Orders Can Save You Money
Buying in bulk will usually save you a considerable amount of money. Always look for these kinds of deals when possible.
Look for deals when trying new wine
Try not to drop a lot of money on a new bottle of wine that you aren’t sure you’ll love. Try out new bottles when they go on sale to minimize risk.
Beware Of Shipping Costs
Different retailers are going to have different shipping costs attached to your wine purchase. Make sure you know what you’re getting into.
Promotions Are Frequent
Most online retailers will usually offer different deals and discounts at different times. Use these saving opportunities when you get the chance.
Myths vs Reality
Some Wine Improves With Age
Not all wine is going to get better the longer that you let it lay around. Wine that has a lot of tannin, a lot of acidity, and intense fruit flavors usually get better after three or five years of rest.
Decanters May Not Be Important
Not all wine needs to sit around for a few minutes to bloom. Swirl wine in your glass before drinking and you’ll be able to activate hidden flavors.
Wine Can Be Safely Stored Most Anywhere
As long as wine is kept out of direct sunlight and in a space that stays less than 70°F at all times it will be safe. More expensive and collectible wine should be stored a little bit more seriously.
Wine Can’t Be Paired By Color Alone
Be sure that you are matching wine to food based off of its flavor profile and not just its color.
Wine Glass Shapes Matter Little
The shape of a wine glass makes very little difference what it comes to the flavor of wine.