$39 for an On-Location Wine-and-Chocolate Tasting for Six from Parties by Dixon ($250 Value)

Tampa Bay Area

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In a Nutshell

For holiday parties or social gatherings, connoisseur travels to you with imported chocolates and four bottles of all-natural wine

The Fine Print

Promotional value expires Jan 16, 2013. Amount paid never expires. Limit 1 per person. Limit 1 per visit. Reservation required. 24 hour cancellation notice required. Must be 21 or older. Valid in Hillsboro, Pinellas, Pasco, Polk, Manatee, and Sarasota counties. Merchant is solely responsible to purchasers for the care and quality of the advertised goods and services.

Wines are often named for their region of origin, such as Burgundy, Bordeaux, or Tightly Sealed Bin on Windowsill. Send taste buds traveling with this Groupon.

$39 for an In-Home Wine-and-Chocolate Tasting for Six ($250 Value)

A wine expert pairs four bottles of wine with imported chocolates for participants to sample and demonstrates how the flavors and characteristics of each wine can change with food. Before the approximately one-hour event, patrons can consult with the expert to devise a lineup of varietals that will best suit the group’s tastes. When the event comes to a close, patrons keep all leftover wine.

Parties by Dixon

As a former professional golfer, Dixon Smith once hopscotched the globe’s fairways and greens with a bag of clubs in tow. Today, he visits homes and offices with wine bottles plucked from an inventory of more than 550 all-natural, additive-free wines produced by more than 200 vineyards from around the world. During his collaborative wine-tasting events, Dixon keeps sippers entertained and informed with intriguing factoids on topics such as the German grape harvest and the best ways to make a grape cry into your wineglass.

Although he has plenty of facts to dispense, he stresses that he’s “not there to bore” guests, and prefers to let each wine’s unique characteristics speak for themselves. Since people’s tastes are subjective, he introduces them to a broad swath of wines from France, Italy, Chile, and other famed growing regions, so tasters can develop their own opinions. Instead of answering the question of which region produces the best wine, he describes the noteworthy differences of each, and explains that wine appreciation is far more complicated than choosing red or white, bottled or boxed, and wineglass or helmet with straws.

When clients book Dixon for a holiday party or other social gatherings, they won’t be inviting the pinot pedant from the cinematic wine saga Sideways, which notoriously slumped merlot sales and boosted pinot noir’s production. Dixon’s tastes and views on varietals are much more inclusive. When asked about his thoughts on the blockbuster film, he replies, “There’s nothing wrong with merlot.”

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