These things are always awkward to write so I will just give you some generics. My name is Eric and I am a 28yo accountant. I am married and have a 6 month old son. My wife and I are recently more serious about wine and consume 5-6 bottles a month. We love Cab Sauv and Zin mainly, as they are what we started on and it stuck.
We look forward to learning about other regions and varietals. Being a lurker for the past few months, I have already learned much from you all.
Beginners from TN
- Reply by EMark, May 12, 2012.
Welcome aboard, Eric. Since you indicated that you've been observing on the sidelines and have already learned much, you've eliminated most of the rest of my welcoming speech.
As a Californian, I endorse your appreciation of Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel--they happen to be my favorites, also. I have to say that I am a tad older than 28. From this perspective I can assure you that you have wonderful adventures ahead learning, and sampling, new wines.
Any favorite Cabs or Zins? Any new directions that you think might intrigue you?
- Reply by Eric Tinch, May 12, 2012.
Listing favorites may be difficult as we just recently began keeping notes, but my wife's Aunt and Uncle gifted us a mixed case of (2001-2003, I believe) Chateau Potelle VGS Cabs and Zins that were pretty tasty.
As for new directions, this is where I'm at the crossroads. My instinct is to master the grapes we frequent, which are Cabs, Zins, and Rieslings, and then expand slowly. But with my introduction to this website and reading a couple of books, I am itching to grab a bottle from every section of the store. However, I always end up in my safe zone though. I am the type that does a little research so I can make an educated guess rather than buying a bottle with an awesome label or name (even though VGS is gimmicky :).
- Reply by EMark, May 13, 2012.
"I am itching to grab a bottle from every section of the store."
You've pretty much described my normal shopping mode.
Following your instinct is a very good strategy. I feel that wine appreciation and enjoyment is very personal, and it should be approached from a personal comfort level. While I say I like to pick from all departments of the wine shop, I do start with favorites. Then I start filling my basket with new adventures. I was in a wine shop a few weeks ago and was walking up and down the aisles slowly adding to my cart. A sales guy offered to help, and I told him that today's visit was to stock up on "pop and pours." He chuckled, saw that I was not struggling and left me to my own devices. One of the wines that I picked up was a Semillon-Chardonnay blend from a winery with which I had no familiarity--Spann Vineyards. A few days ago we opened that wine and had it with dinner (grilled halibut, I think). I liked the wine--crisp, not overwhelming with a cascade of layered flavors--but my wife just loved it. Well, I'm not fool. Yesterday, I was back in that store and bought the last three remaining bottles of that Spann Semillon-Chardonnay. In a brief conversation with another of the sales people in the store, I told him about my rationale for buying out their remaining stock. He commented that he agreed that the Spann Sem-Chard was a terrific wine. He also added that Spann has an excellent red Bordeaux blend. Maybe he was just doing his sales job, but I will now keep my eye out for that Bordeaux blend.
Chateau Potelle just hit my radar screen a few weeks ago. I have never tried their wine, but have learned that they have an outstanding picnic program at the winery. (I suspect that I may be the only person on Snooth who is attracted to a winery because I want to picnic there.) We are planning to be in the Sonoma/Napa area in late June, and will try to arrange visit Potelle at Mt. Veeder for a picnic, and tasting, and, most assuredly, the purchase of some of wines.
I agree with your strategy of avoiding "awesome labels." I also avoid "cutesy" names that try to play on words. I may be missing something here or there, but I'll wait until I hear a recommendation from somebody I respect before buying them. (In all honesty, it hasn't happened, yet.)