There is always something magnificent about being surprised, though modern-day life can take this pleasure away if one is not careful.
Due to the amount of information that is at our fingertips, I find that expectation has the potential to damper our experiences.
So, I try to be as open-minded as I can when I drink wine. For me, wine is all about the taste. Too much information can cloud one’s sensory judgement.
The best wines command you to take another sip. It is as if they have an irresistible charm. These wines are not necessarily the rarest or most expensive wines. But they are the wines that are a perfect fit for your mood, palate and your environment.
I experienced this recently when handed a glass of wine at a wedding. As I was abroad, in a country not overly known for wine production, I had no expectation about the origin or variety.
The wine was captivating in its generosity of flavour and length. The fruit was evident, in the stone-fruit sphere, though not overly so, and there was a pleasing stony vein.
But more than this, it made me want another glass, which is the true hallmark of good wine.
By the second glass, I let myself deduce that was probably chardonnay, most-likely French. It turned out to be the 2014 Louis Latour Pouilly-Fuissé, perfectly satisfying in every way, and while it is a respected wine from a renowned appellation in the Mâconnais, southern Burgundy, it is not a rare or overly expensive label, though it was captivating all the same.
But more importantly, it drew me in without any expectation about what it was meant to be.
The vintage of this wine is no longer available in Australia (but there may be a few in New Zealand), but I wanted to mention the wine more to illustrate a point.
It is good to be surprised when drinking wine; for the wine in the glass to win you over.
So, when you are next entertaining, consider serving your guests wine from a decanter, with the bottle hidden from view.
Don’t ask them to guess what the wine is. Just allow them to focus on what is in the glass, without the distractions of the label, variety or price. You may find them delighted, and surprised, about the wines they truly enjoy.