Have you finished your holiday shopping yet? Don’t forget the gift that will delight most of your list – WINE! Whether your gifting your clients, boss, sister, mother, friend (do I really need to go on?) wine is a sure fire crowd pleaser. Here is a quick guide to select the best bottle for everyone on your list.
One cardinal mistake made by even the most mindful wine collectors is underestimating a friend’s taste in wine. Remember, you want to impress the gift recipient! It’s hard to go wrong by selecting a mid-range to high-end bottle. This isn’t to say you can’t get a decent wine for a reasonable price but you have to know what you are looking for and it’s easy to go wrong in this area.
Know the person’s tastes -Do you know what your gift receiver drinks? Most wine drinkers have particular tastes. Consider what you’ve seen the person drink in the past, and then go for something the same or a step up.
If you’re not sure what the person drinks, consider these additional tips:
Ask questions -Gazing at your wine shop’s collection of wines can be quite daunting. If you’re a bit lost, don’t be afraid to ask the person in charge for advice. Many will work within your price range to help you find a good, drinkable wine, especially if you can specify a few parameters, such as whether you want a sweet or dry wine. If you’re unsure, ask what sells the best and has had the most rave reviews. Be sure to let them know it is a gift and you are sure to leave with a thoughtful, non-mass-produced bottle in a swingy, smart paper bag or box that looks special, as a present should. If you are buying for multiple people, plan ahead to purchase the bottles at the same time. Most shops will give you a discount when purchasing six or more bottles.
Consider the season- During the winter, you may want to go with fuller bodied wines since the weather is chilly and meals tend to be heavier. Cabernet Sauvignon, Bordeaux blend, Syrah, Zinfandel, and Malbec are fine in the reds. For whites, choose an oaked Chardonnay. You can also go for a sparkly wine or champagne, that people tend to not buy for themselves very often. Who can resist a nice glass of bubbles anyway?
Go with the numbers. Chardonnay and Cabernet are by far the best varietal sellers in Charlotte! You have a high chance of satisfying your gift receiver by choosing one of these. Another safe all around choice is a moderately priced Pinot Noir.
Mind your manners If you’re giving the wine as a hostess gift, do not assume that the host will be opening the wine during the party. Although it’s always a score if they do!
Best of luck with your holiday shopping! Don’t forget to add your own name to your shopping list!