I've recently discovered my interest in wine since turning 21, and I've been learning some of the lingo through this great site. I'm about to graduate from college in May, and I hope to leave my days of Franzia and refrigerated Yellow Tail out of a solo cup behind.
I have a lot to learn, but I just wanted some input from you on how to become a wine enthusiast on a budget. Any suggestions on what to buy, where to store bottles without a fancy cellar, etc. would be much appreciated. I do know that I am a fan of California Pinot Noir and Moscato, if that helps.
Wine Newbie, College Budget
- Reply by JonDerry, Feb 17, 2012.
Sounds like fun, happy tasting. Let us know if you find any keepers.
By the way, for chianti classico's, a good one is Fontodi, and their 2008 is real nice.
- Reply by jsncruz, Feb 17, 2012.
Hi Mallory! I'm a fellow newbie too, and I live in a place where cellars are extremely rare, so I hope whatever I know may be of help to you.
The safest place I've found to be good for storing wine is the cabinet under the kitchen sink. Just make sure it's clear of dripping water (which may damage labels over time) and other knick-knacks that may damage/crack the bottles. I have two sections: a larger area for the wines that need to be stored on the side, and a smaller section for the screw-caps which I think are safe to store standing up. It's pretty cool and dark under a kitchen sink too, so no risk of UV damage!
As for affordable starters, I went Chilean. Chilean cabs are VERY affordable and some are real gems in the mouth, for me at least. I like Antares and Terra Vega cabs, nothing younger than 2010. The 2009 ones are particularly delicious for me. I am a big, big fan of Australian Shiraz, so I can recommend 2008/2009 Hardy's or Lindeman's to start off. Taylor's is also quite good. My girlfriend is a vegan so lately I've been experimenting with Chardonnays so that she has something to complement her buttered veggies and what not. Frontera Chardonnay (2010) is a very affordable option, as well as Hardy's Chardonnay (2009) though the Hardy's is a tad strong for our taste.
My budget in wine is roughly $100 monthly, and I've found this to be quite enough. I average 2 bottles consumed weekly. I wish it was more though, but can't be buzzed all the time!