How to win at wine in 2015.
Want to make some changes for the better in 2015? Relax. We’ve got you covered.
1. Drink Smarter, Not Harder
After the Hogmanay Hangover has subsided and we face the year ahead, we all want to make changes for the better. (How is that gym membership coming along, by the way?) It’s easy to plan a diet that will last a week, or plan to drink less; it’s better to incentivise yourself to be successful. In the Online team at Majestic we’ve resolved to drink better wine – so we spend the same amount per month and buy fewer but, crucially, better bottles.
2. Get The Cellar You Always Wanted
Everyone dreams of having the perfect wine collection, an amazing array of special bottles for future enjoyment. Of course, if you had them at home, you’d drink them on a lazy Tuesday. Enter Lay & Wheeler, our fine wine specialist. The Cellar Circle is a great way to build a collection of wine at in-bond prices (that means no duty or VAT), so you can defer the cost until you’re ready to take delivery and enjoy the wine, or avoid it entirely if you choose to sell the wine on if it has gone up in value. The wine is stored in a temperature-controlled bonded warehouse. Best of all, there’s no joining fee – just a subscription into your account – all of which you get to spend!
3. Drink Seasonally
As the calendar pages turn, new wines are released. Most wines are intended for early drinking, so knowing when vintages are released can be helpful if you want to drink wine at its best. Rosé is the obvious example, intended for drinking while young and fresh: Drink Southern hemisphere pinks in autumn, they’re picked and pressed in Feb-Apr; drink Northern hemisphere pinks in spring, picked and pressed in Sept-Oct.
Next time you’re out for dinner, don’t just dive in for the second-cheapest wine, it often has the highest mark-up and is the least good value option. The higher up the list you go, in many cases the better value the wine gets, so ask your waiter what they recommend and trade up. An extra £10 on your bill may well result in a much higher quality wine, and a more memorable dining experience!
Many restaurants will offer you the chance to Bring Your Own bottle rather than buy from their list, usually with a per-bottle corkage fee for the privilege. If you’ve got a really special bottle, this is a great opportunity to enjoy it (just don’t forget to offer the somellier a taste!). It’s only really worth your while if the wine is higher value and if it’s not on the restaurant list already, so a bottle of Blossom Hill isn’t the answer – a rare or special wine definitely is, though, and you should always phone ahead to ask.
Try something new. The Tasting Counter in your local Majestic is a great place to start. Next time, before you reach for the trusty favourites, ask one of the team to suggest something else you might enjoy – you could discover your next big thing!
7. Get Wine Savvy
Keep informed about wine and what to enjoy next. Follow us on twitter @majesticwine and get informed by checking out our YouTube channel.