Wine: Wines of World Market

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From the August 1, 2013 edition

If someone told you World Market had a decent wine selection, would you believe them? Well, we’re about to.And if you haven’t been in one of the three locations on the north side of Columbus, it’s worth taking a spin through the whole store en route to the wine section.

If you’re anything like most people, a spin will likely turn into an hour-long excursion spent sniffing soaps, oogling kitchen gadgets and contemplating getting a new piece of furniture — or a whole room full. Don’t miss the jewelry, which is almost all an exotic take on what’s trendy and exceptionally inexpensive.

On a related note, the wine picks around here tend to be on the cheap and easy side, too. Options (and there are many) span from domestic to imported, from labels you’ll see in well-curated wine shops around town to those you’ve never heard of, but most are below or at $10.

To test the two extremes, we picked one of the most inexpensive bottles we could find: a $5 Spanish red. The 2011 Opera Prima Tempranillo didn’t come across as especially cheap-tasting; the first few sips tasted a bit strong and strawberry-heavy, but it evened out a bit after opening (generally, Tempranillos are a bit heavier, with leather and cherry flavors). It would be good with a similar-minded meal, like grilled pizza.

On the other end of the spectrum, the 2009 Marchesi de Frescobaldi Nipozzano Riserva Chianti ($19) was one of the most expensive wines available in the store — and, really, more than we’d usually pay for anything but a special-occasion wine.This Italian bottle matched the price, though, with a heavy-bodied flavor of cherries, berries and chocolate and a bit of peppery spice. Try it with a deserving piece of grilled meat and grilled vegetable sidesso good

So where does that leave us? As we’ve always said, don’t judge a bottle of wine by its price — even a decent sip can be found at bargain-basement prices. Another tip: Check out the mini bottles for sale at World Market. They’re similarly cheap and make fun little gifts as an add-on or part of an assortment.

The next time you’re shopping for new patio furniture or fun imported gifts, don’t overlook the wine (or the other way around).

World Market

Multiple locations

worldmarket.com