Lettie Teague on Wine Shops
7 Reasons To Love Wine
*** #2 on the List is "Wine Shops" ***
Lettie Teague for The Wall Street Journal
"I visit wine shops as frequently as other people do grocery stores,
and not always with buying in mind. Sometimes I just wander the aisles,
look at the bottles and read the shelf talkers—for all the wildly descriptive adjectives,
not the numerical scores. I also like to see where wines are placed in the store.
Those in the front are typically the ones deemed likely to generate the largest profit margin,
and that means they’re not always the best value for the customer.
I also like eavesdropping on the requests fellow shoppers put to members of staff.
“A Pinot Grigio, but one that’s expensive,” I overheard one woman say to a sales associate,
and I regret not sticking around to see the wine she bought. I also like looking over
the bottles people choose. Best of all, I like talking with store personnel. They might tell me about
a wine I should try or, just as useful, one that I should take pains to avoid. Sometimes I’ll wander
into a store to find a free wine tasting taking place, which gives me an opportunity to talk
to representatives of different wineries or even the winemakers themselves.
None of this happens if I’m buying wines online, in front of my computer at home.
I’ve found that the people who have chosen to make wine a big part
of their life are very much the sort of people I want to have in my life."