Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Confessions of a Wine Collector

Collecting wine, how does it start? For myself it started about 7 years ago when I tasted a Penfolds bin 389. It was my epiphany moment, someone flipped the switch. I was like Caroline in Poltergeist, ‘Caroline come into the light, there is peace and happiness in the light! I didn’t know much about wine and never tasted a wine of superior quality. The Penfold's was the catalyst to where I am today and for that I can never knock Australia. Collecting wine is fun, it always leads to meeting colorful people and it starts engaging conversations. Collectors love hunting for their favorite wines at the best prices and then bragging about it to their friends. Collectors do crazy things like getting on those long waiting lists for those costly elusive limited quantity wines at prized estates eg. (Scarecrow, Screaming Eagle, Harlan, Sine Qua Non)

In most cases it my take years to receive an offer for an allocation(3 years to receive Scarecrow for moi). We desire wines from estates with a good story, philosophy and an all star wine making team. Collectors enjoy evaluating wines, picking apart the obvious and subtle nuances on the bouquet and palate. There are single blind and doubleblind tastings. We decant wines, double, triple decant, mollydooker shake, vinturi, slow oxygenate, vacuvin and private preserve. We check fills levels, cork profusion, capsule spins, seepage signs and color discrepancies. We store our wine in cellars, wine coolers, anonymous lockers, bonded and duty free storage facilities. We enjoy coming up with those mouth watering descriptions, velvety tannins, asian spice, bright acidity, mocha and mint notes. A bit geeky I have to say, but there is a nerd inside all of us. Bored yet? I hope not.

The collecting community is not large so at times it can be like a fraternity. It brings people together from all over the world thru wine forums like Mark Squires, Bordeaux Wine Enthusiast, Wine library tv, Wine Spectator and Auswine to name a few. We have our magazines Wine enthusiast, Decanter, Wine and Spirits, World of Fine Wine, QRW or Wine Spectator etc… We’re always on the prowl for the next big tasting (not a pouring) or a new wine bar to christen. I’ve met alot of great people and have tasted incredible wines. I collect wine and also invest in wines. I am more of a collector than an investor, but I enjoy both. The only time it’s not fun is when I peek at my credit card statements. Calling Dave Ramsey!!! It time to get back to my roots as a fiscal conservative. Whatever it’s worth I’m not ashamed....my name is Marc and I am a wine collector.

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