Ask an obsessive wine geek if you want to discover a delicious taste that’s new to you.
Wine may not be the most egalitarian of pleasures, but it doesn’t require elitism (unless your goal is to drink what your neighbor can’t). What it does require is obsession, though not necessarily your own: You just need to know someone who has taken the time to taste, absorb information, investigate and cull.
You might think that an information superhighway would be the perfect
place to learn about wine. The Web can, in fact, be the fastest way to find a specific wine you want to buy. But in terms of deciding which wine to buy, the Web can often be more confusing than enlightening. As social media and celebrity continue to gain traction in our culture, wine may be an antidote. A dedicated geek can always find you something delicious that no one has tweeted before, and that no bubblehead has access to.
In these pages, we’ve assembled an army of wine obsessives. We invited fifty of our fellow Americans, both in the US and Canada, to share their passion for a region and its wines, narrowing their focus to six that show the full spectrum of what that region can communicate through a local variety. We did not ask for favorites, or for them to present the wines they think of as “the best.” Instead, we challenged them to show the depth and breadth of their favorite region through a tight selection—six wines to consider if you want to know the region. We tasted with some of our guest experts, dined with others, videotaped a Beaujolais binge and trekked through local vineyards with a Napa cabernet grower. These selections and perspectives introduced us to new worlds of taste, and we hope they’ll do the same for you—perhaps one of these regionally focused lineups will inspire you to seek out the six bottles in question and put together a guided tasting. Or maybe you’ll fi nd a dozen wines from all over the world you want to try. Either way, you won’t drink any better than this.