The wine world can seem intimidating at times. Finding and selecting the right bottle can be a daunting task, especially at huge wine shops or busy tasting rooms. Are you sick of feeling like a novice? Want to be able to impress friends and family without spending time studying wine? If this sounds familiar, this blog post is for you! We’re going to look at seven empowering wine buying tips to help you choose the best wine, every time.
- Ask for Advice, You’ll Never Regret It. What terminology do you use to describe a wine you’re looking for? What is a grüner veltliner or madeira or tocai friulano? Wine stewards and wine salespeople understand that finding the right wine can be difficult, even if you’re a frequent imbiber. You don’t have to use fancy descriptions or spout top vintages or regions. Be honest with them and ask for help. If you want to study up before entering a wine shop, download an easy-to-use diagram of wine varieties like this one from Wine Folly.
- Think About Food First. Great wine is best enjoyed with great food, and it’s often easier to decide what wine to buy once you know what you’re cooking. Check out our 10 Commandments to Wine Pairings for a beginner’s look at what foods work best with fine wine, and why.
- Timing is Important. When are you going to drink the wine you’re buying? If you want a wine to drink right now, look for older vintages or a newer vintage of a lighter varietal. If you are building your wine cellar and won’t drink the wine for months or years, buy wine that will age well in bulk. If you’re not sure when the wine will be opened, look for a different or unique wine you don’t normally purchase.
- Buy by the Case. Once you’ve found a wine or winery you love, stock up. Wineries and wine shops generally give a discount when you purchase wine by the case. We offer a 10% discount when you purchase 12 or more bottles, which can be easily mixed and matched to suit your needs. Saving money and guaranteeing that the wine in your cellar is delectable? It’s a win-win.
- Rule of 3. If your budget is tight and buying a discounted case isn’t an option, purchase three bottles of one wine at a time. The first bottle can be readily shared with friends or family, the second bottle opened for a special occasion or a particular food pairing, and the third bottle stashed away for when you truly want to savor the wine. Pro wine buyers snatch up multiple bottles of the same wine at a time because they know once a wine vintage is gone, it can never be replaced.
- Variety is the Spice of Life. Wine is made from roughly 1,300 different grape varietals; winemakers can blend varietals, use different types of oak or stainless steel to age wine; each vintage is totally unique. The point is… there’s a lot of different wines to be drunk! Spice things up and try new wines, you’ll never know what you might discover.
- Join a Wine Club. Joining a wine club is a simple and easy way to ensure that good wine is never far from reach. If you’ve found a wine you like, why wouldn’t you want to receive the wine at a discount, delivered directly to your door, with access to limited production and exclusive wines no one else might know of? You’ll be able to buy directly from the winery, with someone there to personally guide you through the shopping process (ahem, you’ll be able to ask for their advice). Plus, you’ll also get bonuses such as visiting the vineyards on VIP status. Learn more and sign up for the Beckmen Wine Club.
Overall, look for a store or winery you trust to have a wide array of options, with capable and friendly staff. Ask for recommendations and ask questions if you don’t understand something. You don’t have to spend a fortune on fine wine if you know how, and where, to look.