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Why is wine a great gift choice for special occasions?
When it comes to memorable occasions, a bottle of wine can never go wrong. Below are some of the reasons why people choose wines as gifts:
- Celebratory nature of wine: Wine has long been a part of parties and other special occasions. Whether it is a wedding, anniversary, or milestone birthday, wine is a wonderful way to celebrate.
- Diversity: Wine comes in a wide range of varieties, including different colors (red to white), different carbon dioxide pressure (sparkling or still), and different sugar content (dry to sweet). This creates a wide range of options to suit the recipient’s preferences.
- Thoughtfulness: Giving wine as a present demonstrates thoughtfulness as it shows how you have given the gift considerable thought. You might choose a bottle of wine that you know the recipient will appreciate or holds sentimental value to make it a memorable gift.
- Longevity: The longevity of wines enables it to be enjoyed long after the event has passed because, unlike many other gifts, it can be preserved for years or even decades. This is the present that can be appreciated and savored over time.
The art of choosing the right wine gift
Understanding the distinctions between various wine types is essential when selecting the ideal wine for gift-giving. Take a look at our list of most popular categories and when to choose them:
- Red wines: Red wines often have a heavier body and more flavor than white wines, which make them the best complement for hearty foods like red meat, pasta, and cheese. The bitter and dry taste of red wines brings a perfect balance of sour, bitter, and sweet at the same time.
- White wines: White wines typically have a lighter body and more delicate flavor compared to red wines. They go nicely with lighter fare like poultry, salads, and shellfish. It is definitely a drink of choice when you are looking for a lighter and energizing wine.
- Rosé wines: Rosé wines come in both dry and sweet varieties. They are ideal for summertime festivities and outdoor gatherings. This is a great option if your recipient likes crisp, light wines.
- Sparkling wines: Sparkling wines are excellent for festive events like weddings and anniversaries. They can also be a fun way to give a business gift a little extra glitz. While the most popular sparkling wine is Champagne, there are many more to select from, including Prosecco and Cava.
- Dessert wines: Dessert wines are ideal for pairing with sweets or enjoying after dinner as they are often sweeter than other types of wines. Good examples of dessert wines are Ports and Sherries.
- Fortified wines: Fortified wines have a higher alcohol rate, which strengthens their flavor profile, and are usually drunk as digestifs or aperitifs. Common examples of fortified wines include Sherry, Madeira, and Vermouth.
Wine gifting etiquette
To make sure your wine gift is well-received, there are a few etiquettes to keep in mind:
- Consider the occasion: As mentioned above, each type of wine has different tastes and body weights, which means different types of wine are suitable for different occasions. Take a bottle of red wine for example, the heavy body and strong flavor might be more appropriate for a formal dinner party, while a bottle of sparkling wine is a great choice for an anniversary.
- Be mindful of the recipient’s wine preferences: Do they like rosé or sparkling wines? If you do not know them that well, think about their food preferences. Are they vegan? Once you have something in mind, find the best option that complements their favorite food. Taking note of the recipient’s likes and dislikes can help you choose a wine that they will truly enjoy.
- Choose a quality wine: This simple rule works with every kind of product. If you want to buy something as a gift, choose the best option in your budget range. Do not fall for bottles that are only esthetically pleasing but of low quality. A tip is to look for wines that have received positive ratings and reviews from wine experts, which we will provide below.
- Present the wine nicely: After all, this is a gift that represents your dearness to the recipient. Make it look good! Wines for gift may be presented in an elegant way with a nice wine bag, and perhaps, a personalized note to make the gift extra special.
Top picks by the Club’s Sommelier
As Head Sommelier at The American Club, Lei Dong has a wealth of experience and knowledge when it comes to wine. He has selected some of his top picks of wines and provided his expert insight into why he highly recommends them.
Lei Dong swears by the Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon 2020, a full-bodied red wine hailing from Napa Valley. With rich fruit and ripe tannins, this wine is the perfect pairing for a juicy steak.
For lighter fare, he recommends the Domaine Vacheron Sancerre Blanc 2020, a dry white wine from Loire Valley, France. This light-bodied wine boasts citrus, stone fruit, and mineral notes, making it the ideal pairing for salads and seafood.
For rosé lovers, Lei Dong recommends the Whispering Angel Rosé 2021, a classic dry rosé from Provence. With fresh red berry fruits and floral notes, this wine is deliciously creamy and smooth. It can be enjoyed on its own or paired with any light dish.
Finally, for those who enjoy sparkling wines, Lei Dong suggests the Champagne Jacquesson Cuveé 745 Extra Brut. This elegant wine features white fruits with a slightly woody and mineral touch. It is perfect as an aperitif or paired with shellfish and poultry.
- Favorite Lesser-known Wine Region
If you are looking for something new and exciting to try, Lei Dong suggests exploring the wines of Paso Robles is definitely worth considering. Paso Robles is a lesser-known wine region located between San Francisco and Los Angeles. Despite being relatively unknown, Paso Robles produces a fantastic range of wines, including Cabernet Sauvignon and Rhone blends. Some of Lei Dong’s favorite wineries in Paso Robles include J. Lohr, Daou, and Epoch, all of which are available in The Gourmet Pantry, The American Club’s one-stop shop for exquisite wines, table settings and gourmet food items.
About the Sommelier
Lei Dong, Head Sommelier of The American Club, recently celebrated his 10-year work anniversary at the Club. Lei Dong’s impressive career trajectory started as a Captain and has since grown to Supervisor, Associate Sommelier, Sommelier, and now Head Sommelier. With an extensive list of wine-related certifications, including the Certified Sommelier from the Court of Master Sommelier and the French Wine Scholar from the French Wine Society.
Lei Dong’s passion for wine began when he was inspired by his school lecturer, who was also a wine professor. This ignited his enthusiasm and desire for knowledge for not only wine but also the history and geography of wines. His love for Champagne remains unparalleled as it represents joy, celebration, and bringing people together. He enjoys all styles of Champagne and considers it the ultimate wine experience.
Frequently asked questions
Can I buy wine at the Club?
Yes. The Gourmet Pantry, which is located on Level 1, right beside The Lobby, has one of the largest and most diverse wine selections in Singapore. The Club’s Members are welcome anytime to browse through its selection of over 200 labels of both old and new world wines.
The Club also offers wine delivery through The Gourmet Pantry Online Wine Store: Bottles2Go!
What does wine symbolize as a gift?
Wine is a versatile gift that symbolizes celebration, appreciation, and gratitude towards the recipient. As wine represents respect and admiration, it has the ability to bring people together and create lasting memories, making it a popular choice for all occasions.
What goes with a wine gift?
Wine lovers usually purchase customized accessories if they know the recipient’s preference. In case you have no idea what to choose, select a cheese or charcuterie board, chocolates, or simply write a personalized note.