Selecting the Right Wine Store

Finding a wine shop is not as easy as it sounds, because not all wine shops are created equally.

I have been to many wine shops only to be disappointed by their selection of wines. It reminds me of the three little bears where one bed was too hard, one was too soft and one was just right.

Some stores concentrate more on their liquor sections and so you don’t find a great selection of wine, while others just buy the economical wine because it sells, but once in a while you will find a store with a great selection of wine and liquor.

I mean, 30 year old scotch to really highly rated wines like Opus One, and Silver Oak.

These shops are a rare find.

Many places in Manhattan that I have come across had too many high end wines and due to my budget sometimes I can’t splurge on the high end stuff.

Another problem is the employees often do not have the knowledge of wine or have good recommendations for a good bottle.

Most of the time I feel a little claustrophobic from the small isles and cramped shelves hoping to find a diamond amongst a hill of glass. I wasn’t always a big fan of wine and spent most of my college days playing beer pong with shots of Soco and lime.

I started working at and through the many years employed I have grown to love wine. I have a new appreciation for the time and skill involved in making the next highly rated wine.

I have explored my palate and got a feel for the odd words often found in wine publications.

Words like Bouquet, Tannins, legs, and other odd words that are used to describe wine. As confusing as it may seem, it gradually becomes second hand and you will see as you develop your palate, the more you will be able to pair your wine with food and recommend great wines to others.

I enjoy where I work and I think it is mostly the customers that make it enjoyable. Everyday you learn something new. I remember once a woman came in looking for a Super Tuscan for a tasting club she belonged to and wanted to know what one was.

I recommended a great inexpensive Super Tuscan and she was a big hit because it seemed that all the people in her club all bought the same expensive bottle of wine. People were delighted to know that you don’t have to spend your whole weekly paycheck to find a good Super Tuscan.

I felt really good when she came back to thank me because and told me that her bottle went the fastest because everyone wanted to try something different.

Related: How to read a wine label from the U.S.