No sir, I don’t work here, but…

Friday, January 4, 2008

I love my trips to the wine store, and in those trips, there are the people that I come in contact with. The experiences are a little different than those that happen with the people that you tend to meet while out enjoying libations. In these cases, you're all looking for something, and for those that are trying to navigate the world of wine, any range of selection that's more than a mom and pop store can become baffling.

On one of my last trip's over to Canal's Wines in Pennsauken,NJ (have you realized that I frequent that place), I was watching two older gentlemen peruse the ice wines, looking for something to purchase. Being that this one of my favorite places in the store, I ambled on over to them and gave them my insight; they were looking at a Jackson-Triggs ice wine, exactly one that I tried in late October of last year. As we got into the issues of price and ice wines, they said that they were looking for a good after-dinner wine to drink. Since the bottle is a half bottle, being 375ml, and the price is more than regular wines, I steered them towards the Alba Blueberry and Raspberry, as well as the Santa Julia Tardio and the Symphony Obsession, the latter being the least expensive, but also the most playful on your tongue with it's ever so slight carbonation (the bubbles).

As I was making my way back to my cart, another couple started to ask me some suggestions, thinking that I was a staff member. As they were surprised when I told them I didn't work there, I still took the time to show them some wines that would be good to purchase for their holiday festivities. Of those that I showed them, they choose to purchase several cases of the Casillero del Diablo (Devil's Basement) Carmenere 2006 produced by Concha y Toro of Chile; Greg Cohen, aka G-Diddy, of Southern Wine & Spirits would be proud for this one. For their own personal drinking pleasure, I showed them the M by Montes of Argentina, a fabulous red.

After helping them, I passed them my business card, and was again queried by another customer, a retired gentleman who was shopping for him and his wife. I proceeded to show him some great catches for under ten dollars, of which he picked up a few of them.

I then got a chance to select my own bottles and proceed to the register, that gentleman was next in line behind me and told the cashiers that they should pay me a commission for my little bit of time there, since I would up selling probably two cases of wine in the least.

It's funny as depending upon where I go, either certain customers or employees of various stores know me for my flair for finding interesting and particular wines. There's Tage at the Pennsylvania State Store at 19th & Chestnut Streets in Philadelphia, and the former employee at the State Store located in the 4000 block of Market Street who calls me the "wine guy."

Who knows, you might have even seen me in the past, or might see in the future. If you do, don't be shy to say hello and start up a wine conversation with me.

Oh yes, I am also partial to goods beers too.

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Our Mission: The Black Winer strives to expose African Americans [and others] to wines, without the flair, stuffiness, and airs of elitism and snobbery that you get from sommeliers and high level wine enthusiasts. We believe in finding something that you like the taste of, outside of the basic brands that you have been force-fed over the years through a combination of ethnically targeted advertising, and what people in your family have historically been drinking.

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