A bottle of old vine Grenache with some pink peonies.

Do you need six ways to spice up your drinking? It’s easy to get into a wine drinking rut. We have certainly found ourselves defaulting to the familiar on numerous occasions. So, if you have, too, you are not alone. However, the notion of ‘mixing it up’ is actually great fun and an enjoyable way to consciously approach your wine drinking.

That said, we don’t think anyone likes cracking open a bottle, only to discover they don’t like the contents. Though, on the flip side, the element of surprise can add to anticipation and enjoyment. Though that latter only really hold true if you like that sort of thing. Whatever camp you sit in, below are six simple ideas to help you spice up your drinking and step outside your comfort zone:

Tips to spice up your drinking

1). If you shop at one place for you wine, you could try somewhere else. Different retailers will have different selections. Choosing wines from the same country or grape variety, but from different producers is a good way to inject some variety into your wine selection. Our advice is to look for wines that sit at a similar price point to achieve a comparable price:quality ratio.

2). If you usually buy wine with your weekly shop at the supermarket, why not venture into a smaller independent wine shop. Here, you can tell them what you like. The staff will, undoubtedly, love wine and have all sorts of gems they can recommend. You may even get some samples to taste.

A bottle of Eva Fricke's Rheingau Riesling with citrus fruit in the background.

3). Switch up your varieties. If you are a fan of Sauvignon Blanc, perhaps now is the time to try other aromatic varieties. We’d recommend dry Riesling from Austria and Germany. From Germany, look for Trocken on the label. Or try a Chenin Blanc (unoaked examples from South Africa would be good) or Bacchus from England.

4). Change countries. If you regularly drink Chilean Chardonnay, maybe try a wine from the Maconnais or a Chardonnay from Australia. Again look for wines that sit within your comfort zone in terms of price and don’t be afraid to ask for recommendations from staff.

A bottle of Les Vignes Oubliees from the south of France.

5). Opt for a blend that includes your favourite variety. If you like the spice of Syrah, maybe look at the South of France. Here, alongside Grenache, Syrah often plays a starring role in the reds. If you like Cabernet or Merlot, there are a myriad Bordeaux blends to try from just about every country that produces wines.

6). We know we have already said this, but ask for help. Don’t be afraid to seek recommendations. In addition, occasionally try something completely different. The flavour profile may differ, but if the wine fits your favoured style profile, you could find your new favourite.

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SIX WAYS TO SPICE UP YOUR DRINKING
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