December 01 2015 Top Tips for Choosing Wine as a Gift Top Tips for Choosing Wine as a Gift First and foremost, you really can’t go wrong choosing wine as gift. Of course, wine lovers generally love wine, so that’s a given. But also if you’re looking for something to have on hand for last minute emergencies, Secret Santa ideas, or those really tricky gifts for the hard-to-shop-fors in your life, wine is almost always a pretty safe bet. There are a few things worth considering, though, to make the selection process a little bit easier. Consider your budget Knowing how much you want to spend will immediately narrow your choices. There are great wine options available at all price points, but even if you’re on a tight budget, be considerate in your choices, as you would be with any other gift. Try to find a wine that looks the part - smart and elegant without breaking the bank - and is perhaps an interesting, less obvious choice of style or variety. For the serious wine lover or to really spoil someone, the sky’s the limit. Check out our winemakers’ guide to Ultimate Gifts for Wine Lovers below to spark a few ideas. Consider the occasion Are you buying wine to take to a meal or party? Consider the food being served, if possible, and also the mood of the event. A poolside barbecue will call for a different style of wine than a formal dinner with your partner’s relatives, for example. And celebratory occasions might best be matched with a sparkling wine for that little extra pizzazz. And consider whether you think the wine will be drunk soon or cellared. This can also affect your choice of style, colour or variety. Consider what they like Try to select wines based on what you know they like, rather than what you like. If they love sweet and bubbly Moscatos but you’re a diehard red drinker, a Barossa Shiraz might not be the best choice, even if you’re secretly dying for them to see the light. If you’re not sure what they like, do your best, and have a little fun, by trying to match the wine to their personality. And try to avoid gender generalisations. Ultimate Gifts for Wine Lovers Chris Hatcher Black Label is my ideal gift for special family members and friends as it is a true Australian icon. Since 1973 it is one of the most awarded red wines in the country winning 298 gold medals and 64 trophies including four Jimmy Watsons. It is excellent drinking on release but will age exceptionally well for the next 20 to 30 years. Marie Clay I love giving Brown Label to family and friends as it is a wine that many are fondly familiar with but haven’t seen for some time. It is unique in being a blend of three regions that stood out in that vintage and complement each other to make a seamless and complete wine, with layers of complexity and texture. Clare Dry The Estates of the Barossa Collection is the ultimate gift for wine connoisseurs. Exquisitely packaged, it offers the opportunity to taste four distinctly different Shiraz from four different sub-regions of the Barossa, making it a great exploration of the region and variety. Steve Frost I love giving single vineyard wines as they’re the perfect way to get to know a wine’s origins and how the vineyard expresses itself over time. The Master' Pasquin Vineyard Cabernet Shiraz is a wine that not only offers a delicious indulgence but also takes you on a journey of discovery."