Picking your Tasting
By: George Balling
Every wine consumer we have met over the many years we have had the shop has their own personal taste in wine. Your preferences are the most important thing to us as wine professionals. Sure, we like to introduce you to new things, that is the fun of the wine world. It is not productive for any of us though to be recommending Merlot to someone who really doesn’t like the varietal, similarly if you prefer to drink bottles averaging under $40, we ought not to bother discussing the ones that are $400. It is our job to take your likes and dislikes into account with every recommendation and we take it seriously.
As wine consumers you have the chance to also pick your spots based on which wine events you attend. There are ample opportunities here in our local community to attend wine tastings and winemaker dinners on a regular basis. Here at The Dinner Party, we hold monthly tastings here at the shop and winemaker dinners, partnering with our favorite restaurants. It is a good idea and frankly good manners to purchase wine when you attend events like these to support the winery and the businesses that sponsor the events as there are real costs to all of us up and down the “food chain” to putting them on.
This makes your selections important when you receive invites or learn of wine events through social media or other advertising. The idea of these events is to help all wine consumers find bottles that are good for them, as opposed to an opportunity for you to just drink for free. While many of our tastings here at the shop are complimentary, they are not without cost or lacking in value. They are an opportunity to find your next favorite, and that alone is a very value based proposition.
Most times our tastings are with a specific winery. Depending on where the winery is from, the varietal composition will be determined by the wines they work with. Our passion for the Russian River Valley is well known from our time spent working there. So, when we have a winery from “The Russian” here for events it is a pretty safe bet that the lineup will be dominated by Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
In a couple of weeks, we will be holding a shop tasting with an importer whose name is Champagnes and Chateaus, also pretty easy to figure out what the featured wines will likely include. Other times though it may not be so clear to know what wines will dominate the tasting or dinner we or other wine businesses will sponsor. If it is unclear by the posting on a website or in an invite that you receive you can always call us here at the shop or contact any other wine related business that is hosting the event and ask some questions about the wines that will be poured. It is always possible you might find your new favorites, but it also might help you avoid a selection of wines you really don’t care for.
We all have a wine budget. Even our most capable customers have prices where they are more comfortable purchasing and flat-out limits that they won’t exceed on bottles they wish to purchase. In the case of a winemaker dinner, it is easy to figure out the price on the wines, as the wine prices will determine the price of the dinner. The more expensive the dinner, the more expensive the wines are likely to be. If you want mor specific information on the bottle prices we will be featuring at a dinner or a tasting just give us a call, we are happy to share that with you to help you decide if a dinner or tasting is right for you, and your preferred wine budget.
As wine professionals all of us in the North Idaho wine industry look forward to hosting you at our events. They are a great way for you to try all that we offer in our robust selection, and it is a great way for us to stay in touch and get to know all wine consumers. By selecting the events that are right for you, it makes it easier to find wines that you can and should purchase to support the wineries, distributors, restaurants and retailers that pour so many resources into these great events.