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How To Be A Boss in the Wine Store

Welcome to Inspire Wine

We invite you to join our journey of a life better lived as we pioneer a world-class wine region in an unexpected corner of the world. Our goal is to engage and inspire those who want to learn and share the unique expressions of growing, producing, and appreciating a new style of wines for an emerging wine region. We want to educate, appreciate and share these experiences. We hope you will share with us your experiences and opinions as well.

How to Be A Boss in the Wine Store

One of the most common experiences is “What am I supposed to look for when I walk into a wine store?” You should not be intimidate, but rather be able to walk in and be a boss in the wine store. With just a few tips, you will not only find what you want, but also have fun in the process.

Whether in your local grocery store or a specialty wine shop, there are two main ways wine stores are arranged, and some may do both:

  1. Country or Region (California or Australia)
  2. Varietal (Chardonnay or Pinot Noir)

Within these arrangements, you will find higher priced wines on the top shelves and lower priced wines towards the bottom. Just remember, price and quality are not always correlated.

What is the Objective?

Think about the main objective you have when purchasing wine. Are you looking for something to pair with dinner? Are you looking for a gift? Are you just exploring your taste? This is where online searching and social media can help. The suggestions of wine experts can give you ideas on wine pairings and taste descriptions for certain varietals and regions.

The Label

If you already know the specific wine you want and the varietal it is or the region it comes from, you should be able to find yourself in the correct aisle.  However, if you are like me, you are often curious and want to browse all the offerings.  It’s like walking through the produce section.  You know you want apples, but you need to look and assess their qualities before deciding to purchase. Unfortunately, when shopping at a grocery store, you cannot taste the apples or wines before purchasing. You must look for other information to make your decision. With wine, the label will help make your decision easier.

Sometimes I pick a wine because the label is interesting or appealing.  Sometimes it’s the description on the back label. Sometimes it’s the story of the place on the label that makes me want the wine.  If you want something unique, here is a tip that never fails;

“the more specific the region identified on the label, the more unique the expression is likely to be.”

A wine label that says Paso Robles, a specific appellation in California, is going to have a more unique expression than a label that only says California. The price will be higher because wine coming from a specific region is produced in smaller quantities.

These few tips should give you the confidence to be a boss in the wine store. You will find it to be a place of exploration and discovery. Also, remember to ask questions of the staff in the wine store. They are often waiting to share their knowledge and love of wine with you.

Cheers to a life better lived!

Steve Johnson

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