We have friends over fairly often for dinner, and I always¬†love it when they bring wine. I don’t care what kind is it, how much it costs, or even how it tastes . . . any choice you make either because the bottle is pretty or it’s a tried and true favorite, whether it’s red or white, robust or dry, even just because it was marked down . . . it’s all good. I figure since there’s no way we could ever begin to sample the wine bounty out there, it’s nice to see what my friends enjoy. No wine snobs here!

Here are a few bottles with a range of price points, mostly inexpensive, that have crossed our threshold recently:

  • Line 39 Sauvignon Blanc, Lake County 2010
  • Layer Cake Malbec Vintage 2010, Mendoza – Argentina
  • Vernaccia Di San Gimignano, 2010
  • Heitz Cellar 2009 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc, St Helena
  • Alamos The Wines of Catena Malbec, Mendoza Argentina 2010
  • Alfaro Family Vineyards & Winery Estate Chardonnay, Santa Cruz Mountains 2010
  • Gundlach Bundschu Vintage Reserve Estate Vineyard, 2006 Sonoma Valley
  • Bogle Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, Vintage 2010
  • Mer Soleil Silver Unoaked Chardonnay, 2006
  • Bonny Doon Albarino, 2010

It’s tough to choose a wine, whether it’s for yourself or for a gift. Instead of worrying about vintage and bouquet and all the wine-tasting niceties, I just taste my way through different California’s different geographic wine regions and see what sticks. Over the years our wineglasses have travelled through the Santa Cruz Mountains, Carneros, Lake County, Santa Lucia Highlands, and are moving on to Arroyo Grande. I’ve found that once you choose a region, it’s easier to narrow in on smaller wineries and discover those hidden gems. ¬†

Enter the California Wine Club. This is a monthly wine delivery subscription service with four membership levels beginning at a $38.95. The beauty of a club like this is how much you benefit from the experience of the owners, Bruce and Pam Boring, who do the tough work of traveling to all those small wineries, getting to know the families, sampling their offerings, and then sharing their favorites with their wine club members. Not a bad life! Each monthly shipment also includes their 12-page publication, Uncorked, with recipes and interviews with the winemakers as well as a behind-the-scene look at the wineries. It’s just like a CSA box, except for wine. Click here for more information.

Here’s a cute infographic that pretty much says it all about choosing a wine:

Original Source: How to Choose Wine

Thank you to the California Wine Club for sponsoring this blog post!