As you may recall from my blog post Looking For a Club You Can Drink Your Way Into?, my New Year’s resolution was to reach Century Club status by the end of 2016. You’re admitted into the Century Club if you’ve tried at least 100 different grape varietals. When I initially tallied up the grape varietals I had tried, I was at a pathetic 32. (Apparently, one can only count Pinot Noir once.) That meant I had 68 grape varietals out there I had to source in order for my quest to be successful.
The initial task sounded extremely daunting – where am I going to find 68 wine varietals, many of which I had never heard of and couldn’t begin to pronounce?
Lucky for me, there is a liquor store close to my home called Applejack – with an amazingly diverse wine selection. They also have Chad West, their on-staff wine expert, who is a gem of wine knowledge. And, he especially excels at knowing an incredible amount about random and esoteric wines.
A couple of weeks ago, I walked into Applejack, handed Chad my handy dandy score sheet, which documented the varietals I had tried along with the ones I hadn’t… and he went to work. Chad scoured the store for the various unusual varietals they had in stock. After much aisle walking (he spent a lot of time in the Italy isle) and bottle pulling, he found 53 new varietals for us – almost all at very reasonable price points. He also kept a copy of our score sheet to put any outstanding varietals aside for us as they came into their store. He made the process of sourcing all these different varietals not just easy – but also fun. Frankly, though, I think he enjoyed the challenge of finding these obscure varietals on the shelves as entertaining as we did.
We’re enjoying the task of diligently drinking our way through each of the varietals, (and I’ll be sure to blog down the road on some of the results – like trying all four Madeira varietals side-by-side). Some varietals we’ve really liked, while others we haven’t exactly enjoyed. “Fermented cranberries” is how my husband described one obscure Spanish varietal; and we described a particular Greek varietal as “Sangiovese [the primary varietal in Italian Chianti] on steroids, but not in a good way.” That said, we’ve been pleasantly surprised at all the interesting and diverse wines we’d never even heard of before. We still have a lot of bottles to drink (it’s a tough life we lead), but we’re making steady progress towards my New Years’ resolution.
I bet right now (if you don’t have a store like Applejack near you) you’re thinking, boy, I wish I had Applejacks and Chad in my neighborhood so they can do the same thing for me. Ah, BUT YOU DO!
Knowing that many readers would want to start collecting and drinking 100 different varietals, I reached out to Chad to see if he would be willing to do the same thing for people not living close to Applejack. He excitedly (and graciously) agreed to be the source of your missing Century Club wines. If you send him your own score sheet, he’ll find the bottles you need and mail them directly to you.
Just follow these simple and easy steps.
- Check to be sure you live in one of these states – if you don’t, they can’t ship to you.
- Fill our your Century Club Score Sheet
- Email your score sheet to Chad West at [email protected]
- Chad will pull the bottles you need, bill you accordingly, and ship them off
So contact Chad at Applejack and join me on my quest to drink my way into the Century Club. Tag @10KBottles on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook as you post your bottles and drink your way in to the club.