Founding principles

Jaboulet Bottles Welcome to Oxford University Wine Society! Whether starting to explore the world of wine for the first time or already an established wine lover, I hope our events will educate and entertain you, forming the basis of a life-long love affair with beautiful wine!

Eight years ago I was still wondering why so much fuss surrounds wine. I had never tasted anything that set my heart on fire, only red-tinted liquids that could double as paint-stripper. My interest was eventually stirred when my father opened a bottle so lip-smackingly different it changed my whole outlook - a beautiful Spanish Rioja that appealed to my tastes and made me realise that good wine is a truly enjoyable experience.

This story illustrates the three founding principles of the Wine Society. Firstly, you should find wines you enjoy regardless of current fashions. Just because Robert Parker (the influential American critic) raves about a particular wine doesn't mean you will like it too - everybody has their own tastes. Over the coming year we will sample a huge wide range of wines, helping you establish exactly what you do and don't like.

Secondly, wine is an active pastime. Books and lectures can only teach so much. The most enjoyable and memorable way to learn is actually seeing, sniffing and tasting your way through the world's wines. To sharpen your skills, the Society will be using its contacts to bring you some of the most sought-after examples of fine wine from around the world.

Thirdly, and most importantly, wine is about fun and enjoyment. It's about relaxing with friends or enjoying a good bottle with dinner. It is certainly not about the ‘I-know-more-than-you’ pretension that afflicts that horrid species known as ‘wine-snobs’. The Society will do all within its power to avoid this boorish breed.

Please do make the most of your Society over the year ahead. We hope to meet all members personally and would love to hear your thoughts and ideas for future events - especially if you know any potential sponsors!

On behalf of the Committee, Happy Drinking!

Edward Fitzgerald
Founding President