Over the past month, Lifehacker’s resident fine wine expert/goon guzzler has divulged everything you need to know about Australia’s fastest growing tipple. For those who missed the five-part series, we’ve bottled them all in one place. Bottoms up!
Wine picture from Shutterstock
Nobody likes a wine snob. Even wine snobs don’t like other wine snobs. Wine, on the other hand, is great. If you’ve always wanted to learn more about the art of fine wine, without the pretentious glass-swirling and aggressive posturing that comes with it, then Lifehacker’s easy introduction to wine is for you. In the first part of our comprehensive guide to Australian wine, we introduce you to the basics of how wine is made and decipher some unusual words you may encounter in your local bottle shop.
Have you ever pronounced Merlot with a hard “t”? Made the heinous mistake of calling something Champagne when it was clearly just sparkling wine? Been completely unsure of how to pronounce ‘Tempranillo’ and just mumbled your best guess into your hand? In Part Two of Lifehacker’s wine guide, we’ll be teaching you about some of the grape varieties you’re likely to encounter in Australian wine, ranging from Sauvignon Blanc to Sangiovese.
There are two types of people in the wine-buying world. There’s the “it wouldn’t have won this many awards if it wasn’t a good wine” camp, and then the “wine awards can tell you nothing aside from the size of a winery’s budget” camp. Which one are you? Are those shiny medals useless, or a handy shortcut when looking for a quality wine? Welcome to Part 3 of Lifehacker’s wine guide, where we decipher what — if anything — a wine’s medal collection can teach you.
Australia’s wine glut is legendary — we are the home of the cleanskin and the four litre goon bag for a reason. With so much local wine flooding the shelves of our local bottle stores and restaurant wine lists, it’s no wonder we don’t see more French, Italian and South American wine on our shelves. When we do, it can be hard to make sense of what the labels mean — and that’s if they’re even in English at all.
We’ve arrived at the final part of Lifehacker’s wine guide. You now know some basic wine terminology, some of the best varieties grown in Australia, the ins and outs of the wine award system and some of the best imports from international wine superstars. It’s time to put that knowledge to the test. Here’s how to choose the perfect wine that will impress your friends, family and — most importantly — yourself.