Start by making no apologies for drinking what you like. Wine is about enjoyment and sharing with friends, so go for it—order what you want!
Don’t Judge a Wine by its Label
The next thing to note when considering wines is that labels and brands are only window dressing, and though they may affect pricing, it’s what’s in the bottle that counts. To this end, know that there are some very good wines at places like Trader Joe’s for under $12.
Prepare for Your Tastes to Change
People often discover sweet wines first, but realize there may be a progression as your palate develops. As mine has matured I have ventured into dry wines across the categories of bubbles, whites, rosés, and reds. I have come to love Pinot Noir, but I did not start out feeling that way—I began with sweet whites and rosés and moved to less sweet wines over time. In fact, my love for Pinot has grown to the point where I now think of wines in two categories: Pinot Noir and the rest of the wine world. I love the unique and complex aromas in a glass of young Pinot Noir. If you keep an open mind, follow your palate, and expect your tastes to shift with age, you may find yourself a Merlot connoisseur, or a lover of California wines.