Whether you've already started filling your calendar with holiday events or plan to play hostess to your own seasonal soireé, chances are you'll be gifting (or accepting) many a bottle of the good grape stuff. But before you stockpile a few (or 12) bottles from Trader Joe's, there are three important details to consider for gifting (or hosting with) wine, courtesy of certified sommelier Sarah Tracey.
1. Stick with the classics: No bringing that new jalapeño-infused wine to Grandma's! Whether playing hostess or giving the gift of vino, making sure to grab universally appealing varietals (like Noble Vines soft 667 Pinot Noir) will guarantee guests aren't puckering their cheeks or leaving full glasses behind.
2. Pick wines that have a great story behind them: Handy entertaining hack: Pick a wine that tells a story (even if you have to do a little prelim research). That way, when a guest (or the hostess) asks, you have a delightful little narrative to tell (like, a vineyard that was secretly started during the prohibition era).
3. Select wines with sleek, eye-catching packaging: We know, looks aren't everything. But a surefire way to ruin classy Christmas decor: A cartoon-y label that totally clashes with the Scandi-festive theme you had going on on the mantel. Leave the tacky bottles for the fridge, and gift the classiest and prettiest vintages to loved ones.
And with that, we propose a toast to hostess of the year. Cin cin!