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for wine lovers
The most wonderful time of year (or so we think) is nearly upon us. Temperatures are cooling, Beaujolais Nouveau will soon be here, the decorations are starting to appear and that festive buzz is in the air. But what to give your nearest and dearest? Don’t panic! We’ve rounded up the best gifts for wine lovers so that the oenophile in your life won’t be left disappointed and your Christmas shopping will be a breeze, which should leave plenty of time for mulled wine and gingerbread baking come December! Get ready to be inspired…
1. Wine’s great… but magnums are better!
A carefully chosen bottle of wine makes the perfect gift as far as we’re concerned and can cover a huge range of budgets. Have a think about the person you’re buying for: do they love to try new regions and varieties? Are they passionate about a particular category (did someone say Sherry?)? Is there a classic style they’ve always wanted to try? Then to level-up the gift, have a look at magnums (150cl bottles). While not every wine is available in this format, they can make for an impressive present at a time when they’ll be getting together with groups of family and friends with whom they can share it. A celebration-worthy magnum of Gramona Imperial Brut will set you back less than €40; La Goya Manzanilla en Rama is bottled in magnums for around €25; for a classic Rioja try Viña Ardanza Reserva 2015 (under €50; order from their site to get the wooden presentation box); or, for someone special, you’ll get a Grand Marque Champagne for around €100. Shop around and check out sites like Bodeboca and Decantalo for seasonal deals.
2. We can never have enough books about wine
On cold January days, it’s nice to have a book to curl up with. Even better if it’s about wine! For those just discovering their passion who want to know more, we love the Wine Folly books. Their Essential Guide to Wine should get them off to a flying start. For the wine geek in your life, check out Jamie Goode’s Wine Science, Alex Maltman’s Vineyards, Rocks and Soils or the mammoth Wine Grapes book from Jancis Robinson and co. Or perhaps they’d like a deep dive into a particular region? For Priorat and Montsant, journalist Miquel Hudin’s Vinologue guides are unbeatable. Simon J. Woolf has written two fantastically engaging books on orange wines and on Portguese wines (Amber Revolution and Foot Trodden respectively). And for true vinous escapism, grab a copy of Wine From Another Galaxy from the coolest wine magazine around, Noble Rot.
3. Visits to wineries make great days out
Last month, Gabriela rounded up the best wineries to visit near Barcelona. Check out her article here. Gift vouchers for winery visits make great presents and give the recipient something to plan and look forward to post-festive season. Plenty of regions are accessible by train or bus from Barcelona (such as Penedès and Alella) while others will merit a little road trip (such as Priorat, Empordà or even Rioja). Research restaurants in the area for lunches or any other attractions nearby and they’ll have all they need for a great day out. Some wineries have accommodation on site, so if you’re pushing the boat out, you could even plan an overnight stay. Check out Clos Figueras in Gratallops (Priorat), the spectacular Hotel Marqués de Riscal in Rioja Alavesa (pictured here), or stay local and choose a hotel or apartment in Sant Sadurní, the heart of Cava country.
4. Gadgets galore
For the gadget and wine lover in your life, get them something useful to add to their collection. For us, the best wine gadgets are those you’ll use regularly, rather than oddities to be stored in the kitchen drawer. The Twister corkscrew from Vacuvin always goes down well, opening up bottles at top speed and with minimum effort (€10-15 and widely available). Vacuvin also produce their eponymous wine-saving tool, which pumps the oxygen from bottles allowing you to store the remaining wine for around 1-3 days, without risk of oxidation (€10-20 depending on set). For preserving ‘open’ bottles over a longer period, the Coravin is the professional’s choice. There are many models available, including the new Pivot, so check out their website for the full range (prices from €120-€550). And WCB graduates get between 20-40% discounts on all products! Then there are aerators (options from around €13, though we love Le Creuset’s (€20)) and Corkcicles for keeping wines chilled (around €30), and even a tool designed to age your wine by one year in one minute from Peugeot (Clef du Vin, around €55). We’re definitely intrigued by the last one!
5. Give the gift of wine education with a voucher from Wine Courses Barcelona
Whether your recipient is a fledgling wine lover, an aficionado or a professional, starting them on a new learning journey in 2023 could be the perfect gift for them. We offer vouchers for the value of €100, or for any WSET Level 1, 2 or 3 in Wines course. Vouchers are valid for 1 year from 1st January and the receiver can choose between a minimum of 4 dates for Levels 1 and 2 and a minimum of 3 dates for Level 3 throughout the year. Vouchers are valid for both English and Spanish courses. Click here to purchase or get in touch for more details. To paraphrase our favourite festive diva, all I want for Christmas is to learn more about wine!
So, there you have it: a gift for every wine lover and a gift for every budget. With all your purchases sorted, we hope you find plenty of time to relax this festive season. It’s a great time to get your friends and family together and share your favourite wine discoveries of the year, and sharing wine with those we love might be the best gift we can think of. Keep an eye on the blog and our social media, as next month we’ll be revealing our top wine picks for celebrations. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like further info on gift vouchers or classes offered by Wine Courses Barcelona. And from both of us, cheers!
N.B. All pricing correct at time of publication. Wine Courses Barcelona are not incentivised in any way to promote any of these products or stockists.
WCB provides professional certification, bespoke training packages and wine events for wine lovers from the world over.