About a year ago I received an invitation to join a wine club and although the “club” part was a little off putting (I am reminded of my dance club days) the “wine” part convinced me to RSVP a yes. Immediately. It turns out that a wine club, unlike some other clubs that I may or may not have been a part of, requires very little work for a lot of reward. I like this.
Whether you are hosting or attending, joining a wine club will offer you a chance to catch up with friends, taste loads of great wines and learn a ton about chardonnay, zinfandel and everything in between.
HOW IT WORKS
- First, choose members to join your wine club, ideally ones that are more likely to attend every event.
- Once all members have joined, discuss as a group how often you would like to meet. Whether it is once a month or four times a year, this should be decided collectively so that everyone is on the same page.
- Choose a different host for each event and create a calendar so that everyone can plan ahead and be prepared.
- Before members head out to purchase wine, it is best to decide on a price limit to make it fair for everyone attending. Of course, if your well-to-do friend decides to bring a case of hundred dollar wines, I do not recommend turning them away. Take it and run…. Or share. Whatever.
- If you would like, you may choose to have a theme for your party such as “Rose Only” or “Wines from Italy”. Having themes can really help expand your knowledge on wines and give you a chance to try ones that you may not have otherwise tried.
THE NIGHT OF THE EVENT
- The host generally provides the bulk of the appetizers but if your friends are anything like mine then they will probably never arrive empty handed. Either way, choose the scenario that works best for you and your group but try to do a little research on what foods pair best with wines before hitting the grocery store.
- Prior to the gathering, each member should do a bit of research on the wine that they will be bringing as they are required to provide a bit of a description. This can be short and sweet, outlining any interesting points or basic information such as type of wine, its vintage and region.
- This is the good part! Each guest arrives at the party with not one, but TWO bottles of the same wine. One bottle is shared, or “tasted”, among the group and the other is given to the host to keep. Let’s just say that these parties have done wonders for my wine collection!
Have fun and plan a safe ride home. As “educational” as this may be, you may still find yourself three sheets to the wind by the end of the night.