Barbara Brown: The only way to find out is to try lots of different wines!

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    "I don't like Chardonnay" is a common statement when it comes to wine

    As I sit here typing up my first blog by a blazing fire, sipping a chilled glass of Chardonnay I might add, it hits me that I’m probably my main customer for Chardonnay in my shop!

    I hear two things on a weekly basis – the first is “I don’t know anything about wine” and secondly “I don’t like Chardonnay”.

    “I don’t know anything about wine”. Well you don’t really need to know the finer or technical details about wine but you do need to know what you like if you are going to go home happy with the bottle you have chosen.

    The only way you can find out what you like is to try lots of different wines. You aren’t going to like everything you taste but you do need to taste different wines in order to educate yourself as to what you like and equally what you don’t like. You also need to keep an open mind and get rid of any preconceived ideas you have about a grape variety (eg. Chardonnay).

    Many factors influence how you taste wine (climate, soil, grape variety, annual weather etc) but a few of the more obvious ones are also if you smoke, drink coffee, had a spicy curry the night before, toothpaste, strong perfume/after shave, glassware and for us ladies, I’m afraid to say our hormones influence how we taste wine.

    For me personally the moon can influence how I feel about a wine – ie if there is a full moon I can be highly critical of my favourite wine (amongst other things) and no longer love it anymore. Then I get over it the following week!

    “I don’t like Chardonnay”. This one really kills me. It is one of the best wines in the world but it has gotten a bad rap mainly due to the mass-produced Australian wines destined for a shelf in your local supermarket.  

    I have a confession to make – for my last two wine tastings I brought a Chardonnay with me and covered the label so the ladies “blind tasted” the Chardonnay i.e. they didn’t know what they were tasting only it was white and 9 times out of 10 the Chardonnay was ranked as the favourite white. To say they were all surprised is an understatement. Burgundy is the home of Chardonnay and it is the grape variety used to make Chablis and and one of the grape varieties used to make Champagne and these are a few of the best wines in the world.

    Every Friday and Saturday in Brown’s Vineyard, there is a “Wine of the Week”. I open a different wine every week. Some are in the value range (€10) and some are premium wines. It is a FREE way of getting to taste different wines without having to buy the bottle and you will quickly find out the styles of wine you like and grape varieties.

    Until next time. Happy Tasting.

    Cheers.

    Barbara