8 Surpising things I learned about wine in Napa

I do like wine.

napa-2014-2But to be quite honest I don’t know much about wine. I know when I drink wine whether I like a particular wine or not. And I do like rosé, but that usually gets me a smirk from so-called wine connoisseurs.

Now, we have great wine in the Bay Area, around Livermore, the Santa Cruz Mountains and further south in Paso Robles. There really is not much need to go to Napa Valley, but I wanted to go at least once. I was booked on a wine course. I am officially certified now but I have no clue for what – drinking wine?

 Here are the 8 things I learned. Yup, I took notes. 

  1. Drink what you like! (I am totally down with that!)
  2. Don’t let anyone tell you what to drink or what is good. (Hear that wine connoisseur? I WILL drink rosé!)
  3. napa-2014-1Temperature is important. Don’t drink a red too warm or a white too cold. Put the red in the fridge for 30 minutes before drinking. Take the white out of the fridge 30 minutes before drinking.
  4. Don’t wait too long to drink a wine you bought. It may not get better with age. (Unlikely to happen anyway in my home!)
  5. Glasses are super important and somehow alter the taste of wine. Long glasses promote aroma. Small glasses accentuates acidity. (Apparently, my IKEA wine glasses are not appropriate.)
  6. When you buy expensive wine keep it somewhere safe. (Yup, don’t let the bottle fall out of the car and break as you open the car door…)
  7. For a wine to age well, you need 2 out of these 3: high in acids, high in sugar or high in tannins.  (And if you want the wine to age, don’t put in my fridge. I am just saying…)
  8. Drink a young Cabernet with salty food.

Well, I think I did fairly ok with drinking wine before this class. But I was really surprised to learn and experience what a difference a glass makes. We tried wine out of several different glasses and you could really taste the difference. And, yes, I am making fun of only having IKEA wine glasses (well, it is true…), but I know what’s going to be on my wish-list for next Christmas: new wine glasses.

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