Shopping for wines can actually be a challenge at some of the standard wine stores around the country. If you really pay attention, you’ll notice that much of the selection is geared toward certain regions and grapes. In fact, if you walk down the aisles of Total Wine or ABC Fine Wine & Spirits, you’ll see large selections of Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, and all things California. Really, not a lot of diversity.
Most recently, I was shopping for some Australian wines, and aside from the small section labeled “Syrah/Shiraz,” where I found a few bottles of Australian Shiraz, it was virtually impossible for me to find any other Australian wines on my own–and I was actively hunting.
February Vino Column “New World Reds that Aren’t Cabernet Sauvignon”
I say this not as a dig on these wine retailers, but really as my own observation, and perhaps yours, too. When I pitched my February Vino column theme, I really wanted to challenge myself to look for some New World red wines that were not Cabernet Sauvignon or from California (although, I did include a Paso Robles Zinfandel). When you’re looking for something else is often the time when you realize it’s a lot harder to find than you thought it would be.
However, I did pick out some great economical wines that fit into this category from the big retailers I frequent for my column. The idea is for these wines to be accessible to the average consumer, so I primarily do my shopping each month at Total Wine, ABC, Publix, and Whole Foods, which are the places where your average consumer is likely purchasing their wines.
What do you think? Do you often find it hard to find more interesting wines out and about? In your area, is it primarily Cabernet and California on store shelves?