We have created what we – humbly – call The Ten Commandments of Sipping The Noble Grape, which are more fluid than the more famous “Ten” and will likely change over the next combined 100 years as we experience more and more…and better and better.
1. Taste is personal. If you like it, then it is a good wine for you! Forget about what Parker and all the other “wine experts” write.
2. Life is too short to drink bad wine. if you do not like it, do not drink it. Would you eat bad food?
3. If any of the “wine experts” award 90 points and above (or 18 and above for the contrarians), the wine will not suck. You may not like and/or love it, but it will be well-made.
4. Study the economics of wine a bit to educate yourself why a Euro 10 bottle of Bordeaux probably will not be very good while a USD10,000 bottle of red Burgundy probably is excellent, but superlatively overpriced.
5. A charming champagne should not suffer the excessive chill of a freezer. Please chill properly in the refrigerator and do NOT serve in a flute. It is wine, not grapefruit juice with Alka-Selzer.
6. A wonderful white does not necessarily have to be served cold. Do not dull the nose at the expense of something cool to drink in the summer – stay inside and turn on the air conditioner!
7. A robust red should stand upright for a day or two for Mother Nature, i.e. gravity, to perform wonders on sediment so one can avoid decanting and shocking the wine.
8. Do not pay retail. Wine tastes even better when the price is right. Buy a mixed case or two from a merchant, demand wholesale prices and insist on free delivery. It is a buyers’market. Enjoy it!
9. If you are visiting an exceptional restaurant – which by definition means an exceptional wine list – only bring your own wine if (a) it is an exceptional wine the restaurant does not sell; (b) it is a meaningful vintage you have been saving for a special day, i.e. anniversary; (c) it is a wine you want to share with the sommelier, manager and/or chef. Remember sharing is the key to enjoying wine so always, always offer a sip to the sommelier, manager and chef.
10. Sip everyday! You will learn more. Your liver and kidneys will be better trained than the once per week sippers who shock their systems. Equally, there are too many wines and not enough days to enjoy them all, but you should die trying!!!
If you have any suggestions regarding The Ten Commandments of Sipping The Noble Grape, please tinkle. We are very much aware that learning is a journey, not a destination, and we would look forward to learning from YOU!!!
See also VineNaughties’ Wine Rating Criteria