Anti Wine Snob™
Bargain Wine Reviews, News and Clues
Welcome to antiwinesnob™!
Here’s the deal: I’m crazy about wine, especially red wine. I love the color, the smell, the flavor… And you know what else? I’m even okay with the price.
Why? People seem to think that you’ve got to shell out a respectable amount of money to really enjoy a good wine. I’ve no doubt a lot of money can buy good wine, but I know for a fact that a little bit of money can buy some good wine, too. That’s why this site is devoted to bargain wine.
There’s a perception out there that good wine is really only for the wealthy, or in more modern terms, for folks with some level of expendable income. When we think of people with expendable income, we often conjure images of women in fitted dresses and men in polo shirts sitting at a country club somewhere, chuckling softly at a witticism as they hold a glass of ruby red wine by an elongated stem. Now, I know not all folks with a little extra cash put on airs. I’ve seen at least one humble rich person in my lifetime, after all. And I know that not all wine drinkers are snobs. But for sake of illustration, let’s take a look at our country club goers for a moment, shall we? In case you’re wondering where I am in the picture, pan your internal camera over to the far left of the patio. There I am: the waitress with the ridiculous uniform (it’s Oktoberfest, after all and staff do have to show a level of festivity …)
“Well, now,” says Country Club Patron #1, “I do believe the nose on this is a bit…pungent.”
“Disappointing” murmurs Patron # 2 (she’s the one with the designer hand bag that matches her shoes), “I recall the vintage being a spectacular year.”
Patron #3 has his nose buried within the bowl of the glass. He curls a finger bejeweled with a ring from some fancy college. “It is a hint of lychee with … caterpillars. And a dash of smelt Italian rubber I believe and … [sniff] … shavings of … [sniff] … truffle. The alcohol might be a bit overdone, though….”
And so, our impression of wine begins with gross intimidation and-let’s be honest-just a hint of disgust. Personally, I’ve never had a truffle. I can’t afford one. So a description like this wouldn’t help me. (Unless Patron #3 is not referring to buried fungus dug up by pigs in Umbria, but is referring to those delectable chocolate confections filled with creamy cocoa that I sometimes score in my Christmas stocking; in that case, well, yes, I have tried them. They’re delicious.)
And let’s be honest: do people really smell-or taste-all that stuff in the “bouquet” or in the “mouth”? Smelt rubber? I mean, I’m sure some uber-trained wine-sniffer might be able to, but I seriously doubt Patron 3 detected all those aromas trapped in his well-groomed nostril hairs. And truffle? Why do those fancy wine reviews always mention truffle? Is it that “fifth flavor” kind of thing? Well, then, what about mushroom? Or chicken noodle soup? Or something else most people may be familiar with?
To make matters worse, there seems to be tons of books and websites out there catering to folks like us who love inexpensive wine, and haven’t grown up going to cocktail parties and black-tie fundraisers. “Don’t worry,” these resources assure us in tones that we think we might be able to trust, “Wine is for everyone. I’ll show you the ropes and pretty soon, you’ll be talking like the best of them. The trick is, to learn the lingo, find some obscure varietal and mention it casually as if everyone should know of it….”
Well, there’s the rub. I don’t want to sound like Patron Numbers 1 through 3. I want to sound like a normal person. I want to be able to describe what wine really smells like and really tastes like in terms a normal person can relate to. I don’t care if I impress anyone else, but I do care about learning about wine. I don’t want to seek out Chateau-Fancy-Pants wines that I won’t be able to find (or afford) in my grocery store, anyway. And you know what else? I really like the inexpensive wines from Australia or Chile or South Africa or California. There’s even some from Italy, too. In fact, there are inexpensive, unpretentious wines from all over the world with many of them being just an arm’s length away at your local supermarket. I think they’re really good. And, there are lots of them for under ten bucks.
So what is the goal of antiwinesnob? For starters, to try and describe wines that all of us can afford. There’s so many out there, so I’ll start with wines for under $10.00 for a 750 ml bottle. Preferably, $8.00 and under. If I get to a point where that ground has been fairly well covered, then I’ll move up. Or, if I happen to score a fancy bottle of wine, I’ll be sure to do my best to tell you all about it. If I happen to travel and in so doing come across inexpensive wine I wouldn’t normally find at the grocery, I’ll tell you all about that, too.
I’m not a wine critic or a wine seller. I’m just a down to earth gal who really likes trying–and writing about-wine. I like to research things, too, so antiwinesnob will also do its best to give you some straightforward, informed answers regarding wine in every day language.
I think so. Let’s get to sipping.