How to buy wine as a gift

Wine is the easy choice when it comes to buying a gift. There is a perfect fit for even the most sophisticated palate and it can be as cheap or expensive a gift as you would want to make it!

by: Bruce Jack from Flagstone Winery | 13 Nov 2007

Choosing which wine to buy is a little more challenging. How do you choose the perfect bottle of wine as a gift? How do you work your way through the intimidating variety of wines available?

"It's quite easy, actually," says Bruce Jack of Flagstone Winery. "All you need is a little confidence and some time to browse around. Oh, and you must know a few things about the recipient, of course."

One of the best ways to decide on a bottle of wine is to find out whether the recipient enjoys a particular type of meal. Then ask your local wine dealer to help you pair it with a suitable wine.

For example, a pizza lover will appreciate a good Pinotage, while a Chardonnay will be a great gift for somebody who enjoys a good chicken curry.

Other easy-to-follow tips include finding out:

  • Whether the recipient prefers red or white wine.
  • Which variety the person prefers.
  • If the recipient enjoys white wine, whether he/she enjoys wooded or un-wooded wine.

    If you are pressed for time and need to make a choice, consider the trusted old favourites:
    Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon are good choices for most red wine lovers, a Chardonnay is great for a person who enjoys a dry white wine, while Sauvignon Blanc is a good choice for somebody who enjoys a light white.

    "Magnum bottles are great gifts for people who love sharing a good bottle of wine with their friends and family," adds Jack.

    Wine hampers also make excellent and unique gifts, and most vineyards will offer chocolates, cheeses and even breads or crackers in addition to their wines.

    But in the end, it's all about your budget and how much you are willing to splash out on the intended recipient.

    Jack believes you should buy something that you would ideally like to receive as a gift yourself.

    "We all have an in-built sense of what may taste right or wrong, and South Africa boasts an enormous number of wineries that produce consistently good wine.

    "And if you don't see any of the more famous names when standing in front of a wine shelf, just take a deep breath, and grab whichever wine looks right. The great thing about South Africa is that we generally make very good wine!"

    - None


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