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Wine for Wine People: Treat Them To What They Like

Posted on: December 18th, 2018 by Tom Peiffer 1 Comment

For those of you who have friends or family members who are into wine (maybe even slightly to the extreme), giving them a wine gift or dinner invite, can be a bit daunting. So, if you are considering attracting a wine lover’s positive attention this year, here are few items to keep in mind.

Of course, as with most things, you’ve got to listen to what they say. This can be difficult, especially if you’ve been selectively ignoring their lengthy wine “jibberish” for a year or more.

But, when you notice a chance for an opening, just ask this, “Really, all things taken into consideration, what was your favorite wine this year?”. Then ask for an explanation, “How come?”.

From their answer, you should be able understand the “what, when, and where” of the wine they really like. In other words, what it is (red, white, bubbly, pink, etc.), how old it was when it was really nice, and where it was made.

Recently, I had a discussion similar to this with a wine lover and found out that this person is currently into old red blended wines from Napa Valley. The rest was easy.

121818 Joseph Phelps Insignia

At the bottle shop, we picked out a Vintage Joseph Phelps “Insignia” red blend and served it the next week with a dinner. Just seeing the look on her (the wine fan’s) face was worth every penny of the $200 price tag. You just have feel great about a treat that is totally appreciated.

Another angle is to find out if your wine fan is into “vertical” wine tastings. This is when you have the same wine from the same place, but in different years. People into wine really to like to talk about the differences between years. This is a perfect for a dinner party where there are plenty of people to share and comment about the vintage differences.

Even with white wines that haven’t had much aging, a few years of comparison will be perfect. One not too pricy option is to compare Chardonnay wines from the last few years. This is especially fun with light appetizers paired a wine like Robert Mondavi’s Chardonnay. It is often available in 2-3 vintages when looking at a few bottle shops or online.

So, keep your wine people happy as this year draws to a close. Then enjoy their company and lift a glass to their favorite pastime.

About the Author - Tom Peiffer

Tom has been an avid wine consumer and collector for over 20 years. This pastime has taken he and his family on many visits to wine growing regions, including Arizona. During these excursions, with the accompanying tastings and lectures, it became clear that there is no "magic bullet" wine. For each wine contains its own character, strong points, and weaknesses. Sharing these experiences to help anyone purchase locally available wines is his goal.

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One Response

  1. Danny says:

    Tom – what bottle shop did you pick the Insignia up at?

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