Jan 102014
 

Wine Snob | Wine Education

Photo Courtesy of 303 Magazine.

What makes a wine snob? Is it that they know more about wine than anyone else, or do they just pretend to know more than anyone else? In fact, most “snobs” are just putting on an act. They know a little bit more about wine than those around them, but they are hardly experts. They may have received a little bit of “wine education” (air quotes) by attending a class or two, and they like to show off. The worst are those that keep the knowledge to themselves, hording it like a miser does with gold.

I can’t abide snobs. Nobody likes a know-it-all. Wine is, in fact, just spoiled grape juice. It’s agriculture combined with chemistry. Yes, there is more to it than that, but it’s not really that complicated.

The majority of wine consumers, however, don’t really know that much about wine in general. A lot of them know what they like and stick with what they are comfortable with. To most, wine is a mystery and their ignorance often prevents them from experiencing the simple joys of wine appreciation. Wine can be intimidating. In fact, even those of us who consider ourselves experts are constantly learning new things about wine. It’s what makes the study of the subject so compelling.

Which is why I’m thrilled whenever I come across a genuine attempt at wine education for the masses, like NPR’s Science Friday. In a series they’ve begun called “Out of the Bottle,” they are exploring some of the science behind wine in a way that most of us can understand. Through a series of cleverly produced videos, they’ve made wine education more fun. We need more mainstream wine education like this.