How to Shop for Wine.

Learn about Favourite Wine Alternatives.

It can be very daunting strolling past shelves and shelves stacked floor to almost ceiling with wine! It’s too easy to go with familiarity and old favourites. But you could be missing out

Acceptable Alternatives…see the list below for some grapes and wines to try for a change!

  • Like Sauvignon Blanc? Then you’re a fan of zingy, crisp, acidic whites. Try Grüner Veltliner from Austria, Albarino from Spain and Picpoul de Pinet from France.
  • More of a fan of fuller bodied whites? Try Chardonnay from California or Argentina, Viognier from France or Australia, Chenin Blanc from South Africa or Semillon from Australia.
  • Got to be Gewurtztraminer? You like your wine full flavoured and highly perfumed this is known as ‘aromatic’. Try Torrontes from Argentina, Riesling from Germany or U.S.A and Müller-Thurgau from England or Germany.

  • Partial to Pinot Noir? It’s produced in many countries including Switzerland and Moldova, so give these a try. You may like to consider Zweigelt from Austria and Cinsault from Southern France too.
  • Mainly Merlot or Montepulciano? These are medium bodied wines, good with food and can also be enjoyed on their own. Branch out to Barbera, Grenache, Sangiovese and Zinfandel.
  • Big and bold? if you like full bodied heavy reds like malbec, cabernet sauvignon and shiraz experiment with some grapes that might be less familiar. Try mouvedre, pinotage, petit verdot and touriga nacional from Portugal, normally used to make port.

Spend a bit more

Be prepared to spend a bit more. Bear in mind that duty on a bottle of wine is currently £2.23, vat is 20% and this is before the cost of actually making the wine, bottling it shipping it, distributor costs, margins….you end up spending less than 50p on the actual wine in £5 bottle! Spend £10 on bottle and you get about £3 of actual wine.

Look up and down!

It’s easy to forget to miss he top shelves and those at your feet too. This is often where the more unusual wines are. Seek them out!

Go Google!

There is a vast wealth of information out there about wine. Be prepared before you go shopping. If you’re preparing a dish and want to enjoy it with wine, you will be able to find lots of suggestions on line.

Good Luck and Happy Discovering!