Wineducation: Party Wines 2: themes

Study while you party!

Organising a party for friends is great fun. If you have friends who want to know more about wines but don’t want a structured course this could be just the thing to host.

Talking about wines in a relaxed but considered manner can be a speedy, rewarding and entertaining way to spend a few hours getting further into a fascinating subject.

click to zoom in a new tab

The world of Wine

Many wine lovers find it fascinating to have wine as the focal part of an evening. It can make for a great way to have fun, learn and really kick start any wine appreciation you may want to develop.

This time we are going to look at selecting wines for a themed party. It’s always great to start with a theme. Maybe, a region, like the Piedmont in Italy, or a grape like Nebbiolo.

If readers would like to have any advice about such themes before they strike out on their own, we can help. We have organised, in consultation with the hosts prior, many wine parties.

Sometimes the hosts wish me to speak about the wines we are tasting, other times information is scattered around.

Maybe focus on a single grape variety

As the evenings wear on, some guests concentrate less on the knowledge and more on the company they are in and maybe even the delicious food assembled. And that’s absolutely fine too.

We have conducted many private wine parties in the privacy of clients homes.

Here are a few of the chosen themes ….

Italian and French reds and whites‘ where we tasted 14 different wines over 6 hours with 12 friends and work colleagues…..

Terredora‘ a free to customers, producer-specific, event where we actually brought in the wine-maker from Italy (who happened to be in Shanghai) to meet 17 guests and talk about his wines…or

‘ Global Shiraz, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc and er… Italian Reds’ where we had a multitude of wines from around the world, specifically; copious amounts of Prosecco, then 3 New Zealand Sauvignons Blanc followed by a selection of old and new world Syrah/Shiraz and finally whole gaggle of big mid-table Italian reds. One party, four themes, 7 hours. Mammoth fun! And all the guests paid their share.

Here are some Italian themed cases we have put together to get you started. After all, we do consider ourselves to be something of Italian Wine specialists.

Italian Value Pack (1st & 2nd Tiers Wines)

Price: ¥1,200

A Journey Through Italy ( Tier 1-3 Wines) 

Price: ¥950

Here are some more examples of themes, in no particular order you might be interested in choosing, like specific grapes, specific regions or even a specific producer:

Sauvignon Blanc in the Old and New World.

‘Shiraz!’ or, if you liked the similarly named movie from the 70’s,Cabernet!

5 different European regions (which you select): 1 grape (which you select).

The wines of French Rhone Valley producer M. Chapoutier.

Once you get going, the variations and possibilities for themes are boundless.


updated Mar 2012

Next time: we’ll look at partying through the festive season from November to February.

Previous post:

Next post: