Help! What's the Best Gift for a Wine Lover?

Categories: Ask the Critics

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Tasting glass from the "Dictionnaire encyclopédique de l'épicerie et des industries annexes"

What's a really awesome gift to get for a person who knows way more about wine than me? I don't want to spend a ton of money on some fancy bottle, especially if I'm not sure it's to their taste ... Help!

It can be a bit intimidating to pick out a gift for a wine nerd, but it shouldn't be.

Definitely skip all the dumb, finicky wine accessories -- I don't know a single person who actually wants one of those enormous bottle openers that's shaped like a complicated sex toy.

As far as bottles go, Fork's wine columnist recently pointed us toward three great sparkling wines all made using the same method as Champagne, but made in the Jura and Savoie regions (so they can be yours for less than $25!). Any of these would make a very nice gift.

If you have a little more to spend, I think you should consider sending your friend/boss/mother-in-law, a year-long subscription to wine author Alice Feiring's smart, indie newsletter, The Feiring Line ($65/10 issues). They'll get stories about international wine and winemakers along with about 25 of Feiring's recommendations in each issue.

Feiring is the highly opinionated, independent wine writer who wrote the memoir The Battle for Wine and Love, which critiqued highly influential writer Robert Parker and the affect of his 100-point grading system on the wine industry.

She's a champion of idiosyncratic producers and natural wines (the name given to what's produced traditionally, with minimal intervention) and her writing offers an exciting glimpse at stuff that doesn't always get attention in mainstream wine media. And she loves a good bargain!

The December issue of The Feiring Line features a wine bar in Georgia, an exploration of Basalt, and a guide to holiday partying, and can be sent with a gift card to your wine-loving friend. Find it here.


Read the most recent posts on our food blog or check our longer weekly reviews. Contact the writer at trao@villagevoice.com, @tejalrao.

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4 comments
matheson_graeme
matheson_graeme

@CocoAsianBistro try a book called wine speak by Ronald Searle

Griffister
Griffister

@AlchemyWinePDX Couldn't agree more! All a wine-o needs is a bottle, opener, and enough glasses. Or just the bottle and cleverness.

BinBanter
BinBanter

@luv_wine I love the idea of a wine journal to capture ones evolution of wine knowledge and grape/vintage comparisons.

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