Annually, more than 40% of retail wine sales occur in the months of November and December. When one factors in holiday gift giving, parties, and general merry making, this robust figure begins to make sense … or does it? I sometimes wonder what people, and especially ardent wine drinkers, consume the rest of the year. Unfortunately, the answer is all too clear.
Most wine drinkers are on a budget and are understandably afraid to take a chance on an unfamiliar label. Consequently, they resort to purchasing inexpensive commercial brands of wine on sale. On rare special occasions they’ll splurge and buy an expensive bottle of wine with some degree of name recognition. Sadly, that expensive bottle of wine will likely be too young for present consumption, yet it will be consumed within a week of purchase. In essence, most people drink a label and a price tag and end up paying too much or too little for wine that fails to impress. Moreover, they deprive themselves of the many fine, affordable wines on the market that lay next to a label that everyone knows and can pronounce. In truth, fine wine can occasionally be had for as little as $10.00/bottle, and there is no shortage of outstanding offerings that sell for $15.00-$50.00 per bottle. These undiscovered treasures come from all over the world, and yes, indeed, their names will likely not be on the tip of everyone’s tongue. That’s a good sign. So this New Year, my sincere wish is that every wine drinker branch out to discover that hidden treasure.
A Votre Santé!