Four New Years (Wine) Resolutions You’ll Keep in 2014
This article was originally published in Royal Oaks Living magazine and is reprinted here with permission.
Most New Year’s resolutions involve the word “less,” especially when it comes to alcohol. After enjoying countless glasses with friends and family during the holiday season, it may seem like a good idea to cut back. But let’s be honest, how long do your New Year’s resolutions usually last? (If you’re like me, the answer is not long!) This year, strive to enjoy wine more with these resolutions you can keep well into 2014!
Drink More Broadly
Do you drink the same wine all the time? Or are you partial to a particular varietal, like cabernet or chardonnay? This is the year to resolve to try something new. If you like sauvignon blanc try a Gruner Veltliner from Austria. I recommend Domäne Wachau, Bründlmayer, and Gobelsburg. If you only drink California chardonnay, you might also like white Burgundy. Maison Louis Latour and Olivier Leflaive are both brands I enjoy. Looking for a bottle of Bordeaux that won’t break the bank? Chateau Jacques Noir Saint-Emilion, Chateau Peyrabon Haut-Medoc, and Chateau Des Demoiselles Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux are all great wines that retail for less than $30. Try wines made from grapes you’ve never heard of, like viognier or tannat. Also, next time you’re eating at a restaurant that offers wine pairings, give it a shot. You may discover a new favorite!
Decant More…Especially Young Wines
People are often very confused about decanting wine. Restaurants generally only decant expensive, old bottles giving you the idea that these are the only bottles that need to be decanted. Old bottles of red wine should definitely be decanted to remove the sediment that occurs from aging. But many young red wines can also benefit from the aeration that comes from decanting. This exposure to air allows the wine to “open-up” sooner, and softens and smoothes it out, allowing you to appreciate the flavors. It also takes off any harsh edge! I decant most young red wines I open, especially California cabernets. You can also experiment by decanting half the bottle and just pouring the other to see which you prefer. There’s no need for a fancy decanter, but I highly recommend those from Riedel, if you don’t have one. A water pitcher works just as well, and it’s usually easier to pour!
Drink More Champagne & Sparkling Wines
Most people enjoy champagne only on special occasions – a celebratory toast at a wedding or to welcome the New Year. But champagne is a type of wine and it pairs well with a variety of foods…and occasions. Many of the same foods you may enjoy with beer, such as fried chicken and fish & chips, pair well with bubbly. Champagne also works well with simply prepared foods like eggs, smoked salmon, and my all-time favorite…popcorn! Don’t reserve Champagne and sparkling wines just for special occasions. Grab an Italian prosecco, like Carpenè Malvolti, a California sparkling wine from Schramsberg, Iron Horse or Roederer Estate, or a non-vintage (i.e. affordable!) champagne from Henriot, Delamotte or Perrier-Jouët, and enjoy it with dinner tonight!
Drink More of Those Bottles That You’ve Been Saving
You know the ones I’m talking about. The wine you got in Napa that’s supposed to get better with age. The bottle you’re holding on to because you think it needs the perfect meal, moment, or company. Or the wine you’re not sure is ready to drink. There are only two ways to find out: drink it or call the winery directly and ask them. (Something I highly recommend doing.) While some of these wines may still improve with age, you shouldn’t save them all for the perfect moment. Make today that moment; pop the cork and enjoy!
If you’re still committed to indulging in less wine this year, at least use the money you save to drink better wine! Double Decanted offers a collection of wines from around the world at a variety of price points. Let us help you enjoy wine more this year! Please email me at Kelly@doubledecanted.com for more information or an appointment.