Ya’ll, I thought school was the worst. I went to a small Catholic School and spent most of my classes passing notes to my friends (this was way before texting) and plotting how to get out of field hockey practice. 

But last night I found a school that was right up my alley: Wine School! 

I convinced Justin to join me for a Date Night at Wine Underground’s Wine Appreciation 101. At first Justin was all eye rolley and sighey about going (even though I just went golfing with him….) but by the time we made it over to Wine Underground I think he was on board.  
Wine Underground is the Brainchild of Eric Mihan, owner of Bangor Wine and Cheese. He clearly loves his work, has a passion for wine and has a deep knowledge of the science behind wine making. 
Bangor Wine and Cheese is well known in the area and has an amazing variety of wines and craft beers – and this is a state that loves their craft beers. 
I also drool over the “snack” counter in Eric’s shop every.single.time I go in…fresh cheese, meats, olives and breads…yes, please! 
Anyways! Wine Underground is literally in the basement of the Bangor Wine and Cheese shop and the space makes you feel like you are in a wine lovers basement or a wine cave in Italy. 

The Wine Appreciation 101 classes are kept small so that students can ask questions and get the class off track (guilty)

We learned how to taste wine (without looking like an asshole – because we’ve all been there, right?), how to purchase wine in the store (I usually pick by price and pretty label) and how to choose wine in a restaurant.
We sampled 4 wines that Eric felt were compass points of tasting so that we are able to now articulate to a server or wine shop employee what we enjoy, the taste profile that we are comfortable with and have an open mind when tasting new grapes.
Considering I have been known to buy wine in a box – Trader Joe’s not Franzia, I’m not that bad! – this is a major step in the right direction.

Somehow the class was a perfect blend of super science/wine dorky information (that the guys in class loved) and super simple, useful information about storing, purchasing and tasting wine.

Ben trying out one of our new handy wine tricks!

I would highly, highly recommend the class if you are in the area. It would be a fun date night, girls night or even a work bonding event. Eric is knowledgable and serious but able to really laugh and joke around with the group.

Ya’ll, I seriously asked the question, “what does full bodied mean” and he didn’t bat an eye.

Justin was super into the science behind the grape selection for individual batches and the “personality” of the wines based on their country of origin (hint: it involves stereotypes, so he thought it was super funny).

Not our best pic, but the only one we’ve got…

Eric was not a pretentious wine snob in the least – in fact, we enjoyed a bottle of red that we tasted and went upstairs to purchase it as a souvenir. We were pleasantly surprised to find that it was an $11 bottle of wine – reasonable, delicious and I can identify the flavor profile. Fancy!

My only teensy, tiny wish would be that snacks were served from that amazing deli counter…the class is from 5:30-7 so after 4 glasses of wine, we were ready for dinner. Lucky for me, Wine Underground is right next door to my fave Mossimo’s! Perfect Date Night 🙂