Monday, December 7, 2015

Wine information you can use

"Thanks to your guidance, I have the confidence to choose gift wines that are both affordable and impressive"

The Wine Market is Changing.

"This is the most revolutionary time in wine retailing since the end of prohibition.  The combination of the rise of internet sales and the US Supreme Court's decision striking down some laws concerning direct- to-consumer winery shipping has helped to create more of a free-for-all in wine retailing than ever."

-The Wall Street Journal

We focus on tasty, affordable wines

Most wine publications focus on bottles that are $20, $40, or more, with the token "best buy" feature for those of us in the real world. Yes, there are sublime wines at lofty prices, but  expensive does not necessarily mean "better". If you know what to look for, wines less than $20, less than $15, and sometimes less than $10 can be delicious, unusual, and engaging.

Let experience be your guide

In spite of all the information on big wine sites, few give even passing reference to how to feel confident buying wine.  “Buying Guides”, give ratings, but depending on ratings is risky.  You might not agree with a particular rating, or not be able to find that wine at all.  So here we not only tell you what we like, but suggest how you can find similar wines.

Our mission is to enable you to find terrific wines that fit your taste, and your budget.    We do this in two steps.  First, we recommend our favorites in the Wine Hotlist newsletters and on the  Wine Minute blog.  Then,  as a part of our recommendations, we suggest how to find similar wines wherever you buy wine. 

Read about our knowledge-based approach in the Boston Globe.
Wine lovers  are intelligent consumers, accustomed to being decision-makers in other parts of their lives.  I'd  like to help you be similarly confident when it comes to choosing wine, and less reliant on lists, ads, or pretty labels   (Yes, I sometimes buy wines based on pretty labels, too, and it's usually a mistake!)

TastingTimes is devoted to "wine intelligence for the budget enthusiast". Wines we review are usually under $15, and we look for ways to provide just enough background information to add to the romance, enjoyment, and learning related to the wine at hand. Er, in your hand.

Our Grades

In the Wine Hotlist, we grade wines by the familiar "A, B, C" grade school system.  Usually, we focus on those we recommend ("B" or higher).  When we find a food - wine match, we write about that, too. We usually don't conduct blind tastings,  because we want to enjoy wine like you do; over the dinner table with friends and family. We're more likely to get energized over something that tastes great at $9 bucks than one that tastes great at $25.


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