I’ve finally realised that you should never change for anyone else but yourself. In the past, many of my New Year’s resolutions were based on the ideals of others. It’s time to finally listen to my heart and figure out what’s right for me, and I’ve come to the conclusion – do what makes me content!
Obviously, there are other things I want to do, such as rising above the little things, loving more, and continuing to challenge myself, but I don’t believe that these are things that should just be reserved for the New Year.
Every New Year, without fail, I (along with almost everyone else) make and then quickly break numerous New Year’s resolutions. They’re all great in theory, but as soon as you break them, you’re left feeling empty and guilty, so screw that!
As I previously mentioned in my last blog, I’m going to dedicate my 2017 New Year’s resolutions to the world of wine. Wine is something that adds more smiles and laughter to friendships and exciting sparks to love, it’s poetic, it’s art – yes it can be so many things!
I’ve never claimed to be an expert in wine. This might surprise many, but then again if you really know me well, you are well aware that I’m also not one to brag about what I know or who I know. In fact, I don’t believe that anyone can ever be a complete ‘expert’ in anything, because at the end of the day, there’s always something new to learn.
So without further ado, here are my 2017 wine resolutions…
Consume more White Wine
I’ve always said that Pinot Noir is my preferred wine. It’s sensual, pairs beautifully with meat, and it’s traditionally the wine of romance. Red wine conjures up fond memories – there’s nothing like cozying up next to a blazing open fire with a glass of red, but it’s time to embrace new things.
Most of my wine-drinking experiences have revolved around drinking red wine, mostly because I previously found it so perplexing to find drinkable white wines of any quality that I enjoyed. But today, there’s no excuse, because there are a number of white wines that are arguably better than anything else I’ve ever tried.
Improved and innovative white wine making techniques means that there’s a new and improved skin-contact fermentation process and a better more controlled oxidation process. The result is mind-blowing! We now have access to an incredible range of New World white wines that differ in both body and flavour.
This of course doesn’t mean I’m going to turn my back on red wine. No way! Instead, I’m simply stating there’s a plethora of exciting white wines out there waiting for us to explore.
Drink more Vintage Wines
Like many others, my choice of wine is often dictated by price. Although there are some excellent supermarket wines out there (Aldi’s award-winning wines are proof of this), I do tend to reserve buying better quality wines for those ‘special occasions’.
They say less is more, so instead of buying cheaper wine in bulk, I’ll buy less, but of a higher quality, or maybe I’ll just make more of those ‘special occasions’.
Ask for Wine Recommendations
I can be a creature of habit, but at the same time, I love to take risks, because what’s life without taking risks? However, when it comes to buying quality wine at a higher price, perhaps the desire to take the risk is less.
Instead of aimlessly wandering around local independent wine shops, not really knowing what I want, I’m going to ask for advice from someone who knows what they’re talking about.
Telling a sommelier or a wine shop assistant what you’re looking for in a wine will ensure you find a wine that’s more in line with your tastes instead of just randomly going for a wine based on the bottle and hoping for the best.
Get Out of My Comfort Zone
A lot of life lessons have been learnt recently. One of these has been that I need to get out of my comfort zone more.
While this may sound contradictory compared to my previous point, one of the best things to figure out what you really like in a wine, is to sample more of a variety.
Instead of late night boozy nights with friends, I’m going to seek out local independent wine tastings. Whether it’s an intimate wine tasting for two or a more social one for many, it doesn’t matter as long as I’m with the right people I care about, because at the end of the day, it really is the company that counts.
Learn the Perfect Pairings
Wine and cheese – they’re a match made in food-wine heaven, but wine and food pairings go so much further than just simply matching the right wine to a creamy Stilton.
With so many plans on the horizon, which includes hopefully purchasing my own home sometime in the near future (if everything goes to plan), I want to learn more about pairing wine with exotic foods. I love to entertain, and I love being around people, so it’s only fitting that I learn how to aptly pair wine with different cuisines. Wine and food bring people together, and this is one thing I love!
If this means taking even more courses, so be it, because if there’s one thing that really excites me, it’s learning, and I’m always on the look out for new opportunities.
Educate Myself More
On the subject of learning and education…
People who really know me, inside and out, know how much of a thirst for knowledge I have, which is why I need to learn more about a wine’s origins from the initial planting out of the vines to the pH soil levels to the different tasting notes each wine embodies.
This year’s going to be a challenging one in terms of study. I’ve already committed myself to many things from taking on new teaching qualifications to an MBA. Call me crazy, but I love to learn, so it only seems natural to enroll in a few entry-level wine courses to boost my wine knowledge even more. After all, what we learn with pleasure, we never forget!
I thrive on challenge, and if it doesn’t challenge me, it doesn’t stimulate me – so bring on all those challenges so I can kick some serious ass in 2017!
Travel the Wine World
Travel is food for the soul. Combine this with wine and the endless vineyards around the globe and the world’s definitely my oyster (every pun intended).
I’m lucky enough to have already explored so many different regions and cultures of this beautiful world, but I’m ready to step it up and take it a bit further. I plan to explore some of the world’s best wine regions. South Africa, Chile, Argentina and Napa Valley are all on the list, so now the only challenge I face is finding the right travel companion who shares my passions and naïve zest for life to come along for the ride.
Wine, people and experiences are going to be what shape my 2017, and I can’t wait!