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Here’s how you choose a good bottle of wine (even if you are clueless)

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Picking out a bottle of wine can be a challenging task if you’re not a wine expert. However, we have a list of fantastic wine online selections available, for you to pick out a great bottle of wine to share with your wine tasting buddies.

Check the importer!

When you find that brilliant wine that you just adore, flip the bottle over and memorise that importer. When you make a list of your favourite importers, you will have a list of companies that you associate with providing quality wine. Most of these importers adhere to a ‘house style’ and they will pick wines that follow that particular trend. If you like wine from a particular importer, then the chances are that you will like others they have on offer also. If you are not sure where you should start, then it is recommended that you just experiment and find out for yourself…

Experiment and Record!

Following on from our last point…take the time to experiment and work out what you enjoy, and what you do not enjoy! Both are very important. You should think of wine as you think of food. Every person has preferences. There are going to be certain ingredients that you like and others that make you wince. You know when you are at a restaurant and your eyes go over the dishes that you love and enjoy? Wine is the same! Take notes along the way of your learning journey. Write down what you like, what you don’t like, what it reminds you of. Soon enough you will start to know your preferences.

Locate a wine shop that you like, then depend on them to provide you with quality stuff.

If you have access to a wine shop, be it online or brick and mortar, then you are in luck! Wine shops as opposed to supermarkets put their focus entirely on one thing. The best of these would have carefully curated the selection of wines that they value. The best tip you can have is to buy wine from someone who cares about it. Give them a call and let them regale you with their knowledge.

Wine apps are a great idea, like Vivino or wine-searcher. These help you to buy and track wines. Sites like merchant wine directory can be a good place to start too.

It’s worth trying wines from off the beaten path too, while Napa valley wines are highly regarded, it is going to cost you over the odds for this, however! Underrated wine regions like coastal span, Australia and Corsica mean you can get some ridiculously amazing wines for under £30 per bottle… whereas you could be paying a lot more for the higher rated stuff.

Once you have an understanding of wine, don’t be afraid to ask around for advice – there’s always someone who knows more and there’s always more to learn.

Remember, while you can learn a lot off the bat and give yourself a head start by getting pro guidance on the good stuff. It does pay to do your research, take note of what you enjoy and don’t enjoy, and just enjoy the experience. As with all things in life, it’s about the journey, not all about the destination. I hope that you enjoy your wine tasting experience and we wish you well.

Sheri Gill

The author Sheri Gill