Gone are the days when you need to shell out for a Michelin-star restaurant with a sommelier on staff to get someone to explain to you the difference between a Sancerre and a Sauvignon Blanc. These days, you can get good wine advice without leaving your sofa, thanks to a new bevy of TikTok wine influencers storming the internet. On TikTok you can find winos with recs and opinions that range from budget-friendly to intensely nerdy and high-brow.
@legallywined What happens when you combine a French party tradition with EXCELLENT marketing (thanks to George Duboeuf)? You get a fantastically fun Thanksgiving wine that pairs well with turkey, cranberry sauce, and good company. Part 2 will be up next week! Happy Beaujolais Nouveau Day! #thanksgivingwine #winetok #sommlife #frenchwine #wineeducation ♬ love nwantinti (ah ah ah) – CKay
Michelle Chen, an LA-based lawyer and Court of Master Sommeliers Level 2-certified former somm, makes rapid-fire, no-nonsense wine content where she explains the nuts and bolts of AOCs, grape varieties, food pairings, and more. Her aim is to make wine education “unpretentious” by debunking common misconceptions, decoding wine lists, and teaching you how to find wines that you like without getting overwhelmed by all the technical foreign words on your wine label.
David Choi, a longtime wine importer and wholesaler, takes a high/low approach to wine content, like pairing wines with different fast food sandwiches, or proposing budget-friendly alternatives to pricey champagnes (such as Costco’s Kirkland Brut Champagne). While he often leans towards exploring store-brand American wines (we see you, TJ’s), or wines from Italy, Spain, and Argentina, there are always a number of French bottles in the mix, in addition to their Big Box equivalents.
We love a somm with her own theme song. Isis Daniel, one of Wine Enthusiast’s 40 Under 40 Tastemakers and a WSET Level 3 wine expert, is dedicated to making wine fun again. Her live #TastingThursday videos show the very funny Daniel, often with featured guests, trying different wines and giving her very honest opinions on them. But she also weighs in on market trends, gifting ideas, and answers to fan questions on everything from reverse osmosis to stemless glassware.
Amanda McCrossin is a Napa Valley-based wine expert and sommelier with her own 30-day online wine course for beginners. Whether trying out a champagne vending machine, explaining wine gadgets, or touring Tuscan vineyards, McCrossin is an energetic and enthusiastic oenophile who clearly loves what she does, and wants to share that love with you.
If you’re looking to get ultra-specific with your recommendations, The Wine Guru is your best bet. Instead of relying on an influencer personality, this account is straight to the point about which wines are worth drinking and which ones aren’t (including a whole “Drink it or dump it” series) and at a wide variety of price points. Products shown skew towards California and New Zealand because of the focus on wines that are easily available at your local grocery or wine store, but the French wines that find their way in tend to score higher in the “drink it” camp.
Catherine Rickman is a writer and professional francophile who has lived in Paris, New York, and Berlin. She is currently somewhere in Brooklyn with a fork in one hand and a pen in the other, and you can follow her adventures on Instagram @catrickman.