Updated: Aug 11, 2020
Last week I was finally able to make it to one of my favorite wine shops/wine bars for the first time in 6 months! It was great to enjoy a wine flight curated by a local wine experts (sometimes it feels good to let another person do the choosing for you). And yes, I agree that buying wine online can sometimes be very convenient, but there is something unique about developing a relationship with your wine shop. These are my top reasons to take a drive to your local shop!
1. You get to try or discover wines you may have never picked for yourself!
We can all agree that THERE IS such a thing as a wine rut. Spain is my comfort zone so many times I find myself in the Spain wine aisle at big box stores. One of my favorite things about shopping local is going outside of my comfort zone. So visiting my local wine shop and talking to them allows me to find gems in-store that I wouldn’t otherwise think to buy. The wine world is a vast and endless one, so having local wine shops researching and learning about great producers and bringing it them to you makes the journey easier and more interesting!
2. You get to establish relationships with store owners/employees that will learn more about your palate and what you enjoy!
Nothing replaces normal human interactions (not even those wine quizzes online!). Although I admit I still need to develop those relationships here in Tampa, during my time living in DC, the owner and employees of @wide.world.of.wines became our wine besties and would constantly hit the spot with wine recommendations! They were instrumental in sparking my interest for different wine regions. So make friends with your local wine store employees. Tell them what you enjoy and they will make your shopping experience easy!
3. It makes recommending wines so easy!
If your friends and family are constantly asking you to recommend them wines with no other criteria, send them to a local shop you trust! If you know that a particular store specializes in a style of wine or might have a great selection of wines from a particular region, you can easily trust that they will send your friend in the right direction.
4. Each store will bring something different to your wine collection.
The problem with loving wine is you want to drink it ALL. And each owner/store will have their “thing”. Here in Tampa these are my go to:
@Crucellars: I love going to Cru when I’m looking for hidden gems. By that I mean, small and quality producers, and organic and natural wines at an affordable price! Every wine I’ve bought there I have enjoyed.
@redneckwinecompany: I love going here when looking for a wide range of options! This is also my GO TO when looking for a specific bubbly!
@vintagewinecellars: Vintage is great when looking for solid/quality examples of famous wine regions and styles!
@Bernsfinewineandspirits: If i'm looking for a special bottle, a gift for a wino, or something special for an occasion, I will probably go to Berns Fine Wine & Spirits. They have some of the most exclusive producers in the world. They are also a great spot for wine collectors and enthusiasts.
5. You are supporting local wine experts!
Who doesn't love having a wine community in their city or town? That means more variety, more events, and more wine options! So support your local wine shops. They make your city/town better.
Do you have a favorite local wine shop?