Drink More Grapes

Ever wondered why people don’t try a wider variety of grapes? I have because I believe that is in part variety that makes wine fascinating. The amazing points of difference between the various grapes and wine types should be applauded, not shied away from. They should be tasted and celebrated rather than deemed confusing.

We should all try as many different grapes as we can, that way we will really see how few most of us actually drink.

I also sometimes wonder why some grapes enjoy world-wide fame while others of equal quality struggle for a hearing.

It often seems that a Shiraz will always sell when a Mencia or a Castelão will find it hard to even be tasted.

2 superb grape varieties growing at Contino in Rioja

I recently published an article on Catavino where I mused on this and a few grape varieties that I think deserve to be more loved than they are.

You can read the piece here.

In my opinion it is perfectly possible to really enjoy a wine that you know nothing about and whose label is indecipherable to you after all surely it’s all about how the liquid tastes rather than what words are on the label, isn’t it?

Life Beyond Grape Variety


There is much about how wine is taught, sold and marketed with which I disagree – I suppose that is what comes of having been in the wine trade for such a long time.

However the big thing that I really object too is so fundamental to many consumer’s view of what wine is, that just voicing my opinion might appear somewhat strange and old fashioned.

I fundamentally disapprove of the current focus on grape variety. Wines are sold and marketed chiefly by grape variety and all the wine qualifications and examinations concentrate on grape variety.

To my mind the grape variety from which a wine is made is just one of the pieces of information that a consumer could find useful. What is more, if too much attention is paid to it, then it can limit choice as well as help.

If you are under 35 and reading this, then the chances are that you think of wine by grape variety – this is because you have experienced 20 years or so of marketing based on grape variety as the most important piece of information about a wine. Continue reading