Lately I have been reading a lot of books about wine and they all say the same important message: the best way to learn about wine is to taste as many and as much as you possibly can. Thats why I am forming a wine club. By inviting a small, intimate group of friends to each bring a bottle of the same varietal of wine, I hope to refine my palette and ability to judge aromas, flavors, and finishes. The first meeting is coming up (perhaps meeting isn't the best word to describe event, it's more of a party) in which we celebrate a love and appreciation for wine while learning about what we are drinking. I know education and alcohol rarely go hand in hand, but in this case they do. I began preparing for this party on Monday when I made invitations that can be changed each month. On Tuesday I talked about the menu, on Wednesday tips for successful sipping, and yesterday the look. Today I must come up with a soundtrack for the get together so come party with me.
At certain parties the role of the music is essential for setting the mood. This is one of those occasions where you must not leave the playlist until the last minute. It should not be forgotten because it is as significant as the wine and the menu. A lovely, pleasant sound in the background will add an air of sophistication that this party deserves. Steer away from playing anything trendy and hip, instead opt for festive music without lyrics or with lyrics in another language. Smooth, soulful jazz is a great selection or, if you prefer, something a little more exotic. Ravi Shankar's music is interesting. Brazilian Bossa Nova and Buddha Lounge mixes are crowd pleasing options. Argentina's Juana Molina's music is a mix of piano, guitar and electronica that makes for a mellow background.
If your meeting revolves around a wine from a specific region (mine does since we are tasting a Spanish Rioja), select authentic music from the area to enhance cultural awareness. I'll play Vincente Amigo's Un Momento En El Sonido and the new (to the US at least) Ojos de Brujo Techarí.
Got a great suggestion for the musical selection for this party? Tell me about it below!