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Making wine accessible.

For too long, wine has been the province of elites, the wealthy, and people with western European-sounding surnames. But there's a new website that helps de-mystify the world of wine and make it more accessible to consumers:

David Gaier, editor and publisher of the site, has been interested in wine for many years, but after living close to Napa and Sonoma Valleys for two years, took an even greater interest and attended wine classes at the Culinary Institute of America in St. Helena, California. "I realized that as much as I enjoyed wine, I didn't know much about it, and was often hesitant to order it in a restaurant. I was afraid that I'd get ripped off, or order something terrible that I'd still have to pay for. And I was always concerned that I'd do something embarrassing during the rather silly wine ordering and presentation ritual and be looked down on by the wine guy. This kind of thing is just stupid and it keeps a lot of beer drinkers and others from enjoying and appreciating a whole new world" says Gaier.

Wine-Flair is organized simply, with tabs built around topics including Ordering and Serving Wine, Tasting Notes, Wine Touring, and Frequently Asked Questions. The site addresses topics as diverse as the right corkscrew, what an American Viticultural Area is, why wine costs what it does, and why Zinfandel - a red grape - is made into a "white" wine. Other sections suggest good, basic books on wine appreciation, and explain the most popular wine rating systems such as Parker's.    

Gaier, a professional Member of the American Wine Society, adds "I've gotten to do some wonderful things in the world of wine - walk through vineyards while Monticello's Kevin Corley explains pruning and trellising; barrel taste a fabulous Petite Sirah with the father and daughter who run the tiny boutique winery Allora; walk the underground caves at luxury winery Rudd; and talk at length to the winemaker at powerhouse Joseph Phelps. But people who like wine don't have to do any of that. All they really need to do is learn some basic thingsā€¦and then go exploring. The rest is gravy."

Wine-Flair is being frequently updated and is also set up for RSS feeds. There are links on the site to wine publications, wine events in the New York and New Jersey areas, a glossary of wine terms, and reviews of red, white, rose and sparking wines.

Visit Wine-Flair at


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