What to be aware of when buying a wine

Photo by Thomas Thompson on Unsplash

A wine bottle is one of the best marketing tools that winemakers have to promote their wine. Let me tell you about the tricks winemakers use.

We, as consumers, are prone to buy things that look and feel more expensive. When you have a bottle of wine in your hand, you can feel how heavy the wine bottle is. You can feel and see the punt (or no punt) at the bottom of the bottle.

Heavy bottle

In this study research team found out that when people hold a heavier object (like a clipboard), they give the heavier object more importance and value. So same will apply for a heavy bottle of wine.

The punt

Punt on the bottle does not affect the quality of the wine. It can tell you that the bottle of the wine was more expensive, but that doesn’t mean that the wine in the bottle is better. So why the punt is on the bottle in the first place, you might ask? There are many explanations but which one is the real reason we don’t know. But you can decide for yourself, here is a short list of possibilities.

  • It’s from those times when the bottle was free blown. This technique leaves a punt mark on the base of the bottle; by indenting the point where the pontil is attached, this scar would not scratch the table or make the bottle unstable.
  • It condenses sediment deposit in a thick ring at the bottom, preventing it from being poured into a glass.
  • It increases the strength of the bottle.
    It provides a grip for riddling a bottle of sparkling wine manually.

The Shape

When you look at the shapes of the bottles in a wine shop, they will most likely be pretty much the same. The shape of the bottle is based on the region where the wine was made and bottled. To name a few:

  • Burgundy and Rhone: tall bottles with sloping shoulders and a smaller punt
  • Champagne: thick-walled and wide with a pronounced punt and sloping shoulders.
  • The Chianti and some other Italian wine: round-bottomed flask encased in a straw basket.

Power of the label

As you might notice, lot’s of winemakers change the design of the label every year and there is a good reason for it as you can read in this article from The Eater magazine.

TLDR

When you are buying wine, you should not look at the design of the label or the weight or the punt. You should look at the information on the label and maybe the price. Marketing is everywhere, especially in a competitive business like winemaking, so don’t be fooled by it.

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