Wine & Spirits

A 48-bottle beginner cellar

A 48-bottle beginner cellar

A 48-bottle beginner cellar Author: Style At Home

Wine & Spirits

A 48-bottle beginner cellar

Keep it simple to start.  Don’t buy too many different types of wine until you have explored your palate preferences.  Forty-eight bottles represent four cases that can fit in the bottom of a closet.   For diversity, I would purchase three bottles of each of the following wines, which will give you an interesting mix and a sufficient range of flavours and styles to meet most of your dining needs.  You don’t need to spend more than an average of $20 per bottle to acquire such a collection.

Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand (or Sancerre or Pouilly-Fumé from the Loire):  a dry white with flavours of passion fruit, gooseberry and freshly cut grass, with lively acidity

Chardonnay from California (Sonoma):
a rich, full-bodied wine with buttery tropical fruit flavours and an evident spicy vanilla oak

Unoaked Chardonnay (Chablis): a medium-bodied dry wine with a crisp apple and mineral flavour

Off-dry Riesling (Riesling Kabinett from Germany):
a light-bodied wine with a fine balance of fruit and acidity and apricot, honey and citrus flavours

Pinot Gris from Alsace:
a full-bodied wine with a  sweet peach and citrus acidity

Viognier (Pays d’Oc or Chile):
another full-bodied wine with peach and orange-blossom notes and a touch of residual sweetness

Sparkling wine (Brut style): Spanish cava or Australian sparkling – a medium-bodied dry bubbly with mineral, apple and citrus flavours

Beaujolais- Villages or one of the named village crus:
light– to medium-bodied, with fruity cherry and plum flavours and lively acidity

Shiraz from Australia or South Africa: full-bodied with blackberry and pepper flavours and a spicy oak finish

Cabernet Sauvignon (a petit château from Bordeaux):
medium-bodied with cedar, blackcurrant and vanilla oak flavours

Camenère from Chile: full-bodied and fruit-forward, with black cherry/blackberry flavours and vanilla oak

Malbec from Argentina:
medium to full-bodied, with jammy blackberry and white pepper flavours and an oak component

Pinot Noir from New Zealand or Oregon: Medium-bodied, with black cherry, raspberry and violet flavours

Zinfandel from California (or Primitivo from Italy): powerful and full-bodied, with plum, leather and oak flavours

Côtes-du-Rhône Villages: full-bodied, with peppery blackberry flavour and balancing acidty

Rosè (dry) from Tavel or Ontario: dry, with rhubarb and strawberry flavours – very refreshing.  You’ll find that a dry rose is the perfect summer drink, especially out of doors.

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Excerpted from Tony Aspler’s Cellar Book Copyright © 2009 by Tony Aspler. Excerpted by permission of Random House Canada, a division of Random House of Canada Limited. All rights reserved.




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Wine & Spirits

A 48-bottle beginner cellar