I like wine. I mean, I really like wine. And not just because it is one of the best social lubricants. If they made a wine sans alcohol, but with all the taste and complexity of the real thing, I would be on board. But to be honest, while I'm not sure how one would define that point where one drinks more wine than one should, if there were a Wikipedia article on the subject, it should probably be accompanied by a picture of me with a glass in hand.
I've been selling or writing about the subject for over 30 years, which either makes me admirably experienced or hopelessly out of touch, depending on your point of view. And I currently work at the Boise Co-op Wine Shop, a place sometimes accused of harboring wine snobs. I'll plead the Fifth on that, but I will gladly admit to being a wine geek. Honestly, since I drink wine most every day, I can't really afford to be a snob about it, at least not on my salary. Most of the bottles I buy retail for around 10 bucks, less when I factor in case discounts. So the majority of the wines you'll be reading about in my blog posts (assuming anyone reads it), will be value oriented. But because of my job, I do get to taste wines I can't otherwise afford, and you'll hear about the best of those as well.
In that former category, I'm really enjoying a richly textured California white from Shooting Star. It's an 2007 Aligote, Burgundy's other white wine grape, the more familiar being Chardonnay. The Shooting Star Aligote is about as wine geek as it gets, but it's also an exceptionally delicious bottle filled with aromas of honeydew melon and pear and tropical fruit flavors that are rich and unctuous. It's the perfect wine to brighten things up during this dismal gray February covered in clouds that just won't seem to lift. Maybe it's not a complete substitute for the long absent sun, but it's a start, and it can be yours for just $12 a bottle.