5 Useful Resources For Wine Lovers

Wine is not only one of the most popular alcoholic beverages in the world, it also plays a significant role in many cultures and religions, from Ancient Greek ceremonies to Judaism and Christianity. If you're a fan of this celebrated drink, then the people, organizations, and events listed here should be right up your alley. Whether you're an aficionado looking to expand your knowledge or a casual drinker in need of a few useful tips, there's something here for you. This video was made with Ezvid Wikimaker.

People, Organizations, & Events That Wine Drinkers Will Love

Name Description
Tom Cannavan Author & journalist who writes about wine, food, and travel
Jon Thorsen Author of Reverse Wine Snob and proponent of judging wine based on taste, not price
San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition Annual wine contest and tasting experience
Winegame App that puts a modern twist on a blind taste test
Taste Washington Event that showcases the wines & restaurants of Washington State

5 Wine Variants

  1. Red Wine: Made from dark-colored grapes & involves extraction of color from the grape skin
  2. White Wine: Usually made from green or yellow grapes & is not stained by the skins
  3. Rosé Wine: Incorporates some color from grape skins, but to a lesser extent than red
  4. Fruit Wines: Made from fruits other than grapes, like apples or berries
  5. Mead: Made by fermenting honey

Gift Ideas For Wine Lovers

How Wine Is Made

In Depth

For many, becoming a serious wine drinker can be intimidating, as worries about such rules as only drinking white with fish, or bypassing screw tops in favor of corks, keep people from enjoying the experience. Fortunately, there are myriad resources available to help budding aficionados navigate through the various vintages, pricing, and buying. In no particular order, here are five helpful individuals, organizations, and events designed to serve as your guide to vino.

Coming in at #1 is Tom Cannavan, an award-winning writer, broadcaster, and judge. Cannavan offers the opportunity to learn more about vino in a relaxed, non-intimidating environment through his masterclasses, festivals, and tastings. His popular articles spotlight food and wine pairings such as the best reds to pair with a classic surf and turf, or the finest dessert white to finish off a holiday meal of Smoked Salmon Canapes, Roast Duck, and Chili and Cumin-roasted Sweet Potatoes.

The Wine School that Cannavan offers is a free, six-part course featuring everything you need or want to know about vino, from grape to glass. Topics include a comprehensive history lesson on wine, advice on choosing, buying, storing, and serving, and key differences between sparkling, sweet, and fortified. Additional curriculum includes multiple choice quizzes, book reviews, and guides to popular regions.

The Wine School that Cannavan offers is a free, six-part course featuring everything you need or want to know about vino, from grape to glass.

At #2 is Reverse Wine Snob Jon Thorsen, who wants aspiring aficionados to enjoy vino regardless of price, believing that more people should partake in drinking it. His Ten Tenets of Reverse Wine Snobbery are designed to encourage letting go of limiting beliefs about the beverage. Among the principles are to drink what you like, be open to experimenting with new varieties, and buy what fits your lifestyle, rather than change your style of living.

Thorsen outlines his mantra of not paying high prices for vino in his book, Reverse Wine Snob: How to Buy and Drink Great Wine without Breaking the Bank. Among the topics covered are the number one rule to always follow when buying or drinking, how to shop at leading retail outlets, and why cost has nothing to do with taste. He also compiles Best of Lists including, choices for the holidays, how to bring your own bottle to a restaurant, and choosing boxed and canned varieties.

The #3 resource is the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, the largest tournament of American wines in the world. Established to support the growth of the industry and the education of consumers in the Bay Area and beyond, the event is a platform for large and boutique wineries alike to showcase their vino on a national scale. A highlight is the Public Tasting, which features vintages selected by renowned judges from across the country. Attendees get to participate in tastings, and sample fine food such as gourmet chocolate, artisan breads, and pastries.

Attendees get to participate in tastings, and sample fine food such as gourmet chocolate, artisan breads, and pastries.

Ahead of the tasting, the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition offers novices and veterans alike access to expert advice on how to enjoy the diverse array of vintages available as part of the experience. Among the tips extended are insights on flavors, food and wine pairings, both during the event and at your next dinner party or meal, and differences between the various whites like Riesling and Chardonnay and reds such as Pinot Noir and Merlot.

Entering the list at #4 is Winegame, an app that encourages you to play with your wine by putting a modern twist on the classic blind taste test. Created by celebrity chef, Jose Andres and his business partner, Rob Wilder, the game is designed to be played with groups, such as family get-togethers, or drinks with co-workers. After choosing a theme and three or four bottles with the labels hidden, everyone takes a sip of the wines and enters their best guesses.

Winegame also offers tips on how to host parties featuring vino. Among the recommendations are how to choose a theme for your event such as showcasing seasonal or holiday wines, women or celebrity vintners, or bubbles from around the world. Other insights include types of stemware to use, how to properly swirl wine in the glass to release the aroma, how much to sip, and why you should skip scented candles when drinking.

Winegame also offers tips on how to host parties featuring vino.

Finishing up the list at #5 is Taste Washington, the largest, single-region wine tasting event in the country. It features wineries, restaurants, and specially curated events that showcase the best of the state. A cornerstone of the experience is the Grand Tasting, which showcases local vintages, cooking demonstrations, and the opportunity to meet and interact with area winemakers.

A highlight of the event is the Taste Washington Seminar series, hosted by some of the leading experts in the country, including top winemakers, Master Sommeliers, writers, and academics. You can test your knowledge in blind tastings, travel through the glass to see what makes the terroir of vineyards stand out, and dive headlong into the latest wine science, all while sampling a diverse array of vino.