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Wine is always a great choice of gift. Whether it is a house warming, the first time you meet your in-laws or just a social gathering at a friend’s place, wines are a great gift because of its high perceived value. Value is undeniably dependent on each recipient’s personal preference, but here are some tricks of the trade bound to help you impress even seasoned wine drinkers:

1) Shop at specialty stores
Specialty stores provide a larger assortment of reasonably good quality wines. Even wines at the lowest price point are normally superior to a bottle of house wine in a restaurant. This is because specialty stores often lack space. Hence, when they import from wineries, they are compelled to seek out and choose the best house wines and labels across each price point.

2) Go for those on promotion
Boutique stores like Bottles & Bottles have promotions that offer you great value for your money! For instance, a bottle of Casa Lapostolle’s Cuvee Alexandre range was reduced from its original price of $65 to just $30 per bottle and a bottle of Louis Roederer Cristal went at $228 – more than 50% off its usual price. And if you’re worried about the quality of the labels on sale, be reassured by this: which specialty store would risk their reputation in the eyes of wine lovers by putting up a lousy deal?

3) Know who you are shopping for
Check what type of wine your recipient likes! At very least, you should be able to figure out if that person likes red or white wine. But if you’re still having difficulty, read on for our next tip…

4) Ask for recommendations
The benefit of buying from a wine boutique is that they have knowledgeable staff to assist you! Be honest with them, give them your budget and ask for their recommendations. You may even get to try some of the wines that are on promotion!

5) Be adventurous
If the recipient is a seasoned drinker, they might already have a collection of their usual labels, so it could be nice to give them something different for a slightly different taste. And if the recipient is not familiar with wine labels, well, then you have absolutely nothing to worry about.

Did you know that your eating and drinking habits are a good gauge for what sort of wine you like? This is based on how “strong” your tastebud is. For example, if you love strong flavors in your food, and enjoy drinks like whisky, there is a high chance that you’ll also favour whites like Chardonnay or reds like Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon.