When in doubt choose whites (like Albariño) from Spain, rosés from France and reds from the U.S. (California for bolder varietals and blends, Oregon for Pinot Noir)—a highly simplified matrix that rarely disappoints.
Namecheck white wines from Portugal’s Douro region and look out for Aligoté, a staple grape in white Burgundy blends now in the varietal spotlight.
We all know German Riesling and Austrian Grüner Veltliner are a foodpairer’s friends: watch for Austrian Riesling as the next big thing.
The use of big, egg-shaped concrete ageing-vats rivals barrels and stainless tanks — labels and websites often “eggs-claim” it.
The Loire Valley in central France is a current wineworld darling for whites like Chenin Blanc and light reds and rosés featuring Gamay.
Vin de soif is a French (and sommelier) catchphrase for a light, quaffable wine that’s great with or without food.
Ageing and barrel maturation information.
Serving and food-pairing suggestions.
Indication of the region or terroir where the wine was made.
Notes on the winery’s philosophy or practices.
Importer or distributor, which might share your taste in other wines.
Detailed information about the grape varietals.
Contact information, from an e-mail or URL to a QR code.
Winemakers use drones and tablet-controlled wind machines and watering in the vineyard: time to plug in to wine-tech at home. Apps like Vivino and Wine Ring expand your cellar memory, The Sonic Decanter and Ullo reportedly pour better-tasting wine and the Coravin revolutionizes singleglass pours without oxidation.
The time-and-labour intensive traditional method for bottle-ageing Champagne justifies its price. Winemakers’ new embrace of the charmat tank-ageing method (long used for Prosecco) means Moderately priced bubbly can now help you toast a small work victory or Taco Tuesday. From Ontario, try Lily Sparkling Wine VQA from Colio Wine or Pelee Island Secco VQA.
Aromatized (vermouth) and fortified (like sherry) wines have long been essential ingredients in sophisticated drinks. Wine is now a full-fledged star of the cocktail bar, in sangria or Champagne cocktails, spritzes or Whisky Sours with a Red-Wine Float.