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I have a confession to make. I am writing this sober, so I apologise in advance if this post is more coherent than usual.

My third day in Sicily was my first without any major travelling and my first real opportunity to get in amongst the vines of Etna.

With a 10am appointment scheduled at the vineyard of Passopisciaro, I had to set out early. The journey was a good 5 kilometres as the crow flies and unfortunately I’m not a crow.

Crows rarely have to negotiate rough terrain rising over 200 metres, searching for paths that seemingly only exist on the map, or find themselves crawling on their wings and knees through bramble and barbed wire to reach the closest resemblance of a road Etna has to offer.

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It is human nature to categorise.

Ever since the caveman first simplified his world into two distinct lists:

1. I can eat this

2. This will eat me

we haven’t looked back.

We automatically place everything we see or do into a category or bracket. It is the only possible way to cope with the sheer amount of information we are exposed to on a daily basis and then, in turn, make rational decisions based on that information.

When buying wine we are subjected to countless categorisation – from colour, to grape, to country, to region… and, of course, price.

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Fine wine is a rich man’s game.

Now we’ve got that out of the way we can all pack up and go home. Well, not quite. The enjoyment of a deliciously crafted, beautifully structured wine can be experienced by anyone and on any budget.

As a general rule, the standard of good quality wine will increase with it’s price. However, that is far from the end of the story, most notably because – not all wine is ‘good quality’ in the first place, with the market saturated by anonymous labels and ‘quantity over quality’ branded bottles.

As I will undoubtedly mention many times on this blog – a little knowledge can go a long way when it comes to choosing and buying wine. In this case, if you can learn a little about a few quality vineyards and/or winemakers, you can use their knowledge to lead you on the road to better drinking.

Finding a collection of names you can trust is imperative to consistent quality wine buying on any budget.

All renowned winemakers have extremely well established reputations, and it is hugely beneficial for them that these reputations are upheld throughout the entire breadth of their enterprise.

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Welcome to The Drinking Man.

This is a website dedicated to the enjoyment of wine. Be it the enjoyment gained from sipping a refreshing glass of Sauvignon Blanc on a sunny terrace, or from storing that special bottle of Saint Emilion Grand Cru in a cellar for 25 years or more.

Wine is part of all our lives (well if you found yourself here I presume it is!) and I believe that you deserve to enjoy your wine to the fullest.
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