Meet the Blogger

January 28, 2011 Uncategorized  One comment

Britt and Mason Pritchard Hill

Mason and Brittany on Pritchard Hill, Napa

Some of our loyal readers have been asking who this phantom blogger is, so allow me to introduce myself.

I’m Mason Hewitt, originally from Indianapolis, Indiana but more recently living in sometimes sunny Los Angeles, California (Redondo Beach to be exact), with my lovely wife and editor, Brittany.  I graduated from Purdue University in 2005 making me a relatively young wine drinker.  That fact is what made me so passionate about finding great wine deals. As a recent college graduate , living in Chicago with relatively little disposable income, I was forced to find the absolute best bargains if I wanted to drink decent wine (which I most certainly did).  My ability to spend on wine has expanded somewhat since those lean years, but my passion for drinking only the best values hasn’t.  And that’s why I started Nickel and Dime Wine.  My perspective on wine: If I’m going to spend $5 or $150 on a bottle of wine, it better perform well above its price point.

Rather than bore you with more history, I’ll answer some questions I’m often asked.  Hopefully, these answers will help you learn a little more about me.

What’s the best bottle of wine I’ve ever had?

“Best” is subjective but to my taste, 2002 Joseph Phelps Insignia.  I had it up against some pretty stiff competition that evening, drinking a 1994 Mondavi Reserve, 2002 Cosentino “the Poet”, 2002 Paul Hobbs Cabernet and  a 2005 BV Georges de Latour, among others.  The Insignia was the clear winner.  I bought a bottle of the 2007, so hopefully it’s as good.

What kind of wines do I like to drink?

I’m discovering new wines all the time but my favorites are California Cabernet, Chardonnay, Syrah, and Grenache, Champagne, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Mendoza Malbec, Bordeaux and Tempranillo and Garnacha blends from Spain.  One thing I’ve learned as I’ve tasted more wines from different places is good wine is good; regardless of its origin or what grape it’s made from.  Furthermore, a $100 bottle of wine is usually going to taste good (although MANY exceptions clearly apply).  The challenge is finding a $10 bottle that tastes like $30, $50 that tastes like $100 or $100 that tastes like $300.

How many bottles of wine do I have?

I have around 250 bottles in a temperature controlled cellar/cooler (read about me building it here).  It holds 350 bottles, so I’m trying to become more picky and buy fewer bottles of more varied wines.  Come to think of it, maybe I’ll let this post go unedited so my wife doesn’t have to be reminded.

How did I get into wine?

My dad originally introduced me to good wine and around the same time I started going on a lot of business trips where clients were buying good wine at fancy restaurants.  If I liked a wine, I always emailed myself the name and vintage during dinner (a faux pas I know).  Later I would check my local wine shop, or more often, search online for the absolute best price on that wine and order a few bottles.  The first time I ever spent $200 on wine was when I ordered a 6 pack of Orin Swift’s 2005 “The Prisoner” after drinking it at West Town Tavern in Chicago.  As director of business development for an online marketing firm, now it’s me buying clients wine, but I take a different approach than the clients who were buying me bottles of $150 bottles of Far Niente: I always look for the best value on the menu.  And I usually find one…

Why do I drink wine?

Unlike other food, drink, and most experiences really, wine is infinitely nuanced and ever changing.  We talk about wine and we talk around wine.  It’s often consumed during celebration and wine itself is even a reason to celebrate.  It’s a hobby, a beverage and a lifestyle.  That’s why I drink wine.

Feel free to ask any questions about me or the blog by using the comment section, sending an email to or posting a comment on our Facebok page.  Or you could tweet me, send me a snail mail letter, facsimile, text message, use a carrier pigeon, pony express, or federal express.

One comment to Meet the Blogger

  • Kathy haldrup says:

    Great article, nice to hear how you interest began!

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