At North-Forks, we make it a point to talk about experiences or how much we like a particular wine rather than say we think a wine is or isn’t good. Why? Because we believe that what makes a wine good or great is different for everyone. Also, your taste in wine will change over time, as you expand your palate and taste new wines. The sorts of wines you drink when you first start tasting wine may not be what you enjoy ten years later. That doesn’t mean you weren’t drinking a good wine back then; it means that back then it was good—for you.
North-Forks does have simple rules, however, for helping you determine if a wine is good and if a wine is great. We think it’s very important that more people adhere to these rules, especially as they’re starting out, because we love wine and we think that a good bottle of wine is a very personal experience.
What is the North-Forks rule to determine of a wine is good? This is so simple: Do you like it? If you like it, regardless of what it is, then it’s a good bottle of wine. Just because a wine was rated at 93 points doesn’t mean everyone’s going to like it. What you like matters way more than any points.
What is the North-Forks rule to determine if a wine is great? Once you’ve determined a wine is good, understanding if it’s great is easy: Is it inexpensive? Now, that means whatever that means to you. You may have gotten a great deal on a bottle that was only $300. You may buy a bottle in the store for $15. The cost of a bottle of wine should never sway your purchase—unless it’s on sale—because many factors go into that cost that have nothing to do with quality.
A wise man once told us, “Fall in love with a ten-euro bottle of wine and you’ll never be unhappy.” You’ll save that $300 bottle for very special occasions. Those ten-dollar bottles you could drink as often as you want.