Wine Connoisseur: Underwood Pinot Noir

March 31, 2014

I am quite a wine connoisseur. How so? I totally bought a bottle of wine this weekend based solely on the CAP on the bottle. As in screw-on cap. Not cork. Not seal. That makes me a connoisseur, right?

Hahaha. Totally kidding. Well, about the connoisseur part. I definitely purchased the wine based on the packaging. I am a winery marketer’s dream come true.

I am new-ish to the wine scene. I never really liked it until about a year or two ago. It’s often the bev of choice when you attend work functions, and, through that, I have come to like it. For me, it’s kind of like coffee – I am not sure anyone has their first cup of coffee and thinks it’s the most delicious thing they’ve ever had, but there’s intrigue – for some reason it works and you look forward to your next.

Since wine hasn’t really been my thing, naturally, over the years, I have had more than my fair share of panic attacks at work dinners  that a) I would be the designated wine picker for the table and / or b) be the person that has to do the sniff / swirl / taste routine. I have zero idea what my tastebuds should be looking for and, honestly, I am not the personality that would even turn my nose up at something that was offered to me anyway. If anyone asked me what ‘notes’ the wine had after I did the tasting routine, I’d be screwed and outed for the wine fraud I am. All this to say that if I am the wine chooser and taster, we’re drinking it even if it’s akin to grape-flavored vinegar. My worst moment with wine and a work dinner? Being handed the wine menu – which was on a TABLET – at Aureole Las Vegas about ten years ago (that is, super early in my career). Yea, the restaurant known for keeping 10,000 bottles of wine stored in a gigantic wall which is scaled by “wine angels” who perform acrobatics to fetch your selection in dramatic fashion – that’s the one. A sommelier presented me with the tablet and started asking me questions about what “we” liked in a red or a white…or perhaps a rose? Seriously, dude, no. I was way junior to everyone at the table – and it was quite obvious that I was – pretty sure I was the only one without a jacket on ;). Clearly my Old Navy duds screamed more status and class than I expected – hahaha. Luckily (?) one of the VPs at the table snatched the tablet out of my hands and started browsing through it. He told me he was an amateur wine collector (are there professional ones?) and he’d like to do the honors. I was relieved. Majorly. But looking back, it was pretty presumptuous of him, yea? Fast forward to work dinners today, and it seems I am usually tangentially involved in picking the wine – like my colleagues or boss will ask me what I like or if I am OK with something. Um, yes, generally I am OK with most things :).

However, moving to Oregon has been AWESOME for me fudging my way through wine selections. My latest tactic is to go local with any and all choices – including recommending Pacific Northwest wines and craft beers (even if I have never had them). Most PNW adult beverages we’ve tried, we’ve enjoyed, so I figure it’s a safe recommendation. I’ve successfully coverted a  London colleague to Deschutes Black Butte Porter and another to Cooper Hill’s Pinot Noir. Haha. Chalk one up for me! Woo hoo!

Anyway, back to the wine I chose solely for the packaging + localness. It was good. I liked it. That’s all. No idea why – other than it worked for me. See? Wine connoisseur. Fancy. Haha.

Underwood Pinot Noir

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