Wine became important to me when I finally started tasting wines that weren't essentially drain cleaner. After university I travelled to New Zealand and settled for a year in Wellington. As a place where quality food and drink are essential aspects of the local identity I quickly began to care what I was consuming, and to take notice of taste in a big way.
A few years after I returned to England I got a job working for Majestic Wines, who send all their new recruits on an Advanced Certificate course with the Wine and Spirits Education Trust. Essentially, I spent six months tasting different wines everyday and training my senses to pick out the subtleties of aroma and taste. Over the years, my tastes have changed, and so have my attittudes towards cheap wine.
Not all cheap wine is bad, and not all expensive wine is worth it. You don't need to care about wine to enjoy it, but believe me, if you care the rewards are extraordinary.
Below is a guide to what I feel is important to know about wine in order to care.
Sparkling Wine is a great place to start. It can be light and spritzy or rich and toasty. It doesn't have to cost the earth and if you're looking for something to make you giggle it's ideal.
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