Chapter 4.5: Life’s too short to drink shitty wine.
It was a jolting transition, going from affording whatever I wanted to down grading the brand of shampoo I bought just to save a few bucks. Bootstrapping a business, forced me to push the pause button before each swipe of my credit card. With every purchase I had to ask myself, “Is this worth it?” and more often than not the answer was “no.” No to getting my nails done, no to buying coffee every day, and no to sushi takeout (okay, fine, I still have my favorite sushi restaurant on speed dial ... but you get the idea!) By cutting out all of the things I didn’t need, it opened up space for the things I loved, like conceptualizing NOVAA’s mission statement, or buying our first round of inventory, or celebrating all of it with an amazing bottle of wine.
No matter how broke I am, there are certain things that are nonnegotiable, one of which is a good glass of wine. Luckily, if you know what to look for you don’t need to break the bank to find an amazing bottle. Check out these hacks that will help you find your perfect wine:
Hack #1: Alcohol Content. The higher the alcohol content the better the wine. Get more bang for your buck by checking how potent the wine is on the back of the bottle. If I am buying a red I usually look for 13.5% or above. For whites, I look for 12.5% or above (keep in mind that these percentages will vary depending on the type of grape).
Hack #2: The Year. No surprise here, the longer the wine is aged the more complex it will taste. So pick your grape, pick your price range (I usually stay between $10-$20), and pick a bottle that dates back a few years.
Hack #3: Tasting Notes. Last but not least, after you open up your bottle, let it breathe, take a sip, and then talk about what you taste. Decide which flavors you like and which you don’t so that the next time you go to Trader Joe’s to buy some ten-buck-chuck you’ll know what to look for.
Feel free to pop open a bottle as you continue to follow NOVAA’s story in this blog series about how I bootstrapped a business and traveled abroad for two months while making $12/hour.