Luxury Gift Baskets

Probably our favorite type of gift are luxury gift baskets especially those which are centered around wine. Of course, for those to work well you need to have outstanding wine included in the basket. One great choice for that wine is Simi Winery which was started all the way back in 1876 when two brothers came to America from Tuscany. Giuseppe and Pietrro Simi came to find their fortune in the Gold Rush, but as it was for many immigrants, they ended up finding it elsewhere. The real savior of the winery though was Giuseppe’s daughter Isabella who took over the winery at the tender age of 18 after both her father and her uncle passed away suddenly. She took the winery through not only the dark years of Prohibition but several weak wine markets and even two world wars, finally selling the winery in 1970 when she was over 80 years old!

Freeman Vineyard and Winery

The Freeman Vineyard and Winery is located in the Green Valley area of the Russian River Valley, an exclusive AVA which largely specializes in the cool climate varietals of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. A good choice for a red wine club since the day it opened it’s doors in 2001 because of it’s small production (around six thousand cases of wine are produced each and every year) and high quality (major wine critics such as Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Wine Spectator Magazine and Wine Enthusiast Magazine all rate the Pinot Noir consistently at 90 points or above). Winemaker Ed Kurtzman leads the way after having spent considerable time at both Chalone and Testarossa, sourcing grapes from nearby vineyards, many of which are famous in their own right. Largely consistent with the local style, which is ripe yet restrained wines with higher acidity than many wine drinkers are accustomed to from California Pinot, because of the cooler temperatures.

Finding a Great Wine Gift

Not every wine gift is the same.  I think rationally, we all know that fairly well off the bat-but I wonder if any of us really realizes how distinct and different all the different options out there actually are.

From an online wine club like I talked about in my first note here on Tumblr to buying a series of wine glasses and other stuff in a gift basket, there are plenty of things to buy the wine lover in your life, even if you don’t want to-or aren’t comfortable trying to find them a good bottle of wine!

Wine Clubs Are a Social Activity

An online wine club can be a social activity in wich people come together and discuss wine. The people of the club come to taste and rate the wine based on what a wine sould be, but also on personal prefferances. Testers try different wines by sampling a small amount and then spitting it into a bucket, so that they do not become intoxicated. Red and white wines are usually the base for the clubs, but there are a few exceptions, for instanse a mixture of the both. Most wine clubs are located in or around a vineyard. The cost of being in a wine clubs is based on a few factors, some factors include the number of bottles ordered, number of people in the club, and of course the quality of the wine. Of course a rule of thumb is the more the cost the higher of quality the wine will be. So when choosing a wine club be sure to really ask yourself if its in your price range. Also be sure to ask around and see if its actually worth your time.

If you want more information, Google is certainly your friend, but there is a GREAT blogger over at Area Voices as well.  He talks about much of this same stuff!