It seems as though we may have survived the doomsday prediction of the Mayans, only to find ourselves going over a "fiscal cliff." What's a wine drinker to do? How about a few simple resolutions to assure ourselves a happy 2013?
Let's start by getting back to basics. When out wine tasting, pretend it's your first time. Ask questions. Swirl. Sniff. Swish. Swallow. If you like the taste, make a note of it. If you don't, feel free to have a second sip, or to pour it out. Ask about the type of grape. Don't complicate matters too much. Let your taste buds do the work, and give yourself a mental break. When out buying wine, buy what you like, and again, don't over think it.
Don't get sucked into the train of thought that if it's expensive, it must be good. While there are many excellent wines out there that are out of this world - both in price and in taste - the two are not mutually exclusive. There are also plenty of wines out there that are tasty and within your budget (the budget part is entirely up to what works for you!). Even if your budget is less than $20.00 a bottle, you will have plenty of good wine to choose from.
Be adventurous! This may sound like a contradiction to getting back to basics, but think of it this way: it's because you know the basics that you can tiptoe out of your comfort zone every now and then. Once you know the basics of wine - the grapes, the method of production, the regions, the options - you can then take it to the next step and apply that knowledge to new varietals, new wine regions, and thus, new 'likes.'
Three is a good number to work with. Remember these three things and go boldly into the wine world and have a fun-filled, happy, budget-friendly, adventurous New Year! We're going to follow these three steps throughout 2013 together - one sip at a time!