Nobody goes out with the intention of buying a poor quality wine. Even those operating on a budget prefer to find something that they enjoy, which is most definitely possible as long as you know what you should be looking for when trying to find a quality wine. Unfortunately many people, particularly those who are new to wine, end up making mistakes that lead them to wasting their money on wines that they don’t enjoy.
That’s where we can come in to help you. This week, we are going to be looking at a few more tips that you should follow to ensure your get your hands on a quality wine, instead of a bottle of plonk that end up sitting on the table unfinished.
Look at Reviews
The internet is a remarkable resource for those who are buying wine, as it offers untold amounts of information for those willing to take a few moments to do some research. Take a moment to examine the wine bottle’s label and see if you can find some of the most crucial information, such as the name of the producer and the year the wine was made. Even if the wine is branded with something different, that should still be enough to get started.
Armed with that knowledge, head to Google and type it all in, alongside a keyword such as reviews. In no time at all you should have access to opinions from other wine lovers about the quality of the wine, in addition to a ton of information relating to the producer and some more information about the taste and texture of the drink itself. With all of this knowledge to hand, you should be able to make a decisions about whether or not the wine is actually worth your time.
Don’t Judge on Price
Far too many people look at a bottle of wine, check the price, and then decide that the wine couldn’t possibly be any good because the price tag is lower than they expected. This is a shorts sighted approach to buying wine that not only prevents you from making interesting discoveries of high quality wines, but may also prevent you from supporting smaller producers who are trying to make a name for themselves and need to price their wines below their true values to allow themselves to compete in the market place.
The simple fact of the matter is that price is often an indicator that of a quality wine, but it is certainly not the only one. There are many very good wines out there for less than 20 euros, many of which you can find on this very site. We come back to the advice we gave in our first point, which is to do some research. Before dismissing the wine as not being worth your time, find out if anybody else is saying anything about it. You may find that the cheap bottle of wine is actually of great quality, which means you enjoy the drink and get to enjoy saving a little bit of money at the same time.
Check the Back of the Bottle
Don’t allow a snazzy label to tempt you into an impulse purchase. Any experienced wine buyer will tell you that it’s the information on the back of the label that often provides the clearest hints to the quality of the wine. The back of the label is usually where you will find out about the location, the grapes used in the production of the wine, and the ageing process, all of which can be used to work out if you are buying a quality product.
Of course, certain producer names and certifications on the front are also good indicators, but it will always help to have a little extra knowledge and confirm that the wine is what you expect it to be.
Be Wary of Multi-Bottle Offers
Now while we have espoused the virtues of low priced bottles of wine, assuming you do your research first, there are some things you should be wary of, especially when shopping for wine at a supermarket. In particular, you should probably avoid buying bottles of wine that have been lumped into buy one get one free or two for one offers.
In both cases, the reason that the wine is in the offer in the first place is that not enough people are buying it at its full price. This is an immediate red flag, as it suggests that the wine is simply not of a good enough quality.
Of course, this isn’t always the case. The shop may have miscalculated and ended up with too much stock that it needs to get rid of. Just keep it in mind and take the appropriate precautions.
Don’t Worry About Caps and Corks
There is an old way of thinking that suggests a corked bottle of wine is superior to one with a screw cap. This may have been true years and years ago, but today many great producers use screw caps both because they save money in production and because the cap won’t deteriorate and potentially ruin the wine as a cork might.
Essentially, we’re offering similar advice in regards to caps and corks as we did about the price of a wine in that neither is a stonewall indicator that the wine is of low quality. As such, don’t dismiss a wine just because it has a screw cap, else you may find you miss out on something really good.
Try Lots of Wines
Of course, the best advice we can provide is to try as many wines as you can. Even with thorough research, the wines you buy are not always going to suit your palate. That’s okay. Everybody has different tastes, which is why there is so much variety available in the first place. The key is to learn from the experience and use what you know to make better decisions in the future. After all, half of the fun of wine is learning new things.