One of the most common questions I get asked here at WineClubs.net is what exactly does oenophile mean? What’s it’s definition and meaning? And am I one of the few wine savants that can be considered an oenophile?
What Defines Someone As An Oenophile?
First, let’s define oenophilia. Oenophilia is the great appreciation and devotion to wine. It is typically used to describe someone that considers themselves a true connoisseur of wine. Therefore, anyone that is thoroughly interested in wine and considers it a serious hobby of theirs is likely to be referred to as an oenophile, because they have oenophilia. The best synonym of oenophile is a wine lover or wine savant.
To help you figure out if you are an oenophile or not, here are some common characteristics of people that have oenophilia:
1. They Have A Serious Affinity For Wine
To be considered an oenophilia, the main thing that you need is a pure appreciation for all things related to wine. Those that genuinely enjoy researching, drinking, and trying various new wines. Someone that truly appreciates wine is much more likely to be referred to as an oenophilia because they are going to be much more likely to go above and beyond to try some of the finest wines and to appreciate them. For instance, someone that has a true appreciation for wine is likely going to be much more willing to pay higher prices for the finest quality wines in the marketplace. Along with this, they are much more likely to enjoy going to some of the higher end wine tastings and joining the best wine clubs available, including the 90+ wine clubs. Whereas, someone that has a simple enjoyment for wine is much less likely to pay the higher tier prices for the highest quality wines and will tend to stick with the much more affordable wines.
2. They Often Enjoy Collecting Wines
Another factor that might come into play to describe someone as an oenophilia would be a collector. A lot of people might be considered more collectors of wine than actual drinkers. These people can still be described as one because they are still very much interested in wine to the point where they collect it as a hobby. Those that are collectors are likely to be even more into wine as they are spending a lot of their time researching the finest wines and seeing which wines might appreciate in value in the future. Collectors are typically much more engaged in wine as a hobby than those that would rather partake in the actual drinking of it. Along with this, those that look to collect wines are much more likely to engage in the practice of collecting wines from different regions, countries, and that use different types of grapes and even different methods of manufacturing. These oenophiles have an affinity for international wine clubs. Collectors are going to be some of the most strict when it comes to researching and figuring out which wines are deserving of being in their personal collection.
3. They Get Great Satisfaction From Wine Tastings and Clubs
While a majority of people that would be referred to as an oenophilia enjoy wine purely as a hobby, you can also use the term to describe someone that does it professionally as well. Those that are wine tasters or who drink and grade wine for a living can also be described as an oenophilia primarily because they typically have a greater appreciation and enjoyment for the finest wines. These people are actively engaged in the art of wine and the appreciation of wine as a whole. Therefore, they have an inherent appreciation for it, and they are very much aware of the differences of each wine and how to appreciate the highest quality wines in the marketplace.
4. The Love How Wine Makes Them Feel
While it is typically referred to those that greatly appreciate wines and the most excellent wines available, it can also be generally described as someone that that just really, really enjoys wine. People that are not necessarily as ingrained in the wine culture and the industry as a whole might be people that generally enjoy drinking and tasting new wines. It would be perfectly acceptable to refer to these people as oenophiles.
5. Wine Merchants Definitely Qualify As Oenophiles
Oenophilia is also a term that can be used to describe those that are wine merchants and who happen to sell wine for a living. This is primarily because they will inherently be so ingrained into the wine marketplace and the culture that they can be considered enthusiasts.
Overall, there are plenty of different factors that can go into describing someone as an oenophilia. While a lot of people would typically refer to someone that is a real wine enthusiast and someone that considers themselves a wine connoisseur, it can also be used to describe someone that has a pure enjoyment for drinking wine. However, the purest are likely only going to refer to someone as such if they are really into the wine culture and the collecting, appreciation, and tasting of different kinds of wines. Those that would be willing to spend much more for the highest quality grapes and wines are much more likely to be referred to by the term. In a sense, it is someone that has a real affliction for wine and someone that has intense cravings for the highest quality wines on the market.
Wondering where to find the highest quality wines? Check out our wine club reviews of the best wine clubs available online!