Last night the Wine School hosted a tasting of South American wines at the Senior Law Center. Over the course of the evening, we poured everything from the usual suspects (malbec, sauvignon blanc) to less-known varietals and blends (torrontes, syrah-bonarda), and what struck me most–what always strikes me about tastings that allow us to delve a bit deeper into a specific part of the world–was how rich and varied these wines can be.
Indeed, if you can get past the temptation to taste only what’s familiar, you will find your wine life enriched in ways you never thought possible. That syrah-bonarda, for example, tasted like nothing so much as superripe black fruit dipped in pepper and sipped while chewing Bazooka bubble gum–strange, sure, but also kind of delicious.
The point is this: Drink outside the box, delve into regions and varietals you may not be familiar with, expose yourself to the unusual. The rewards are tremendous.