The black wine grape known as pinot noir had a convincing, if nearly unhinged, cheerleader in the 2004 dramedy Sideways. Miles Raymond, the volcanic, persnickety wine connoisseur, probably turned thousands onto the temperamental libation, which he described in the film as "just the most haunting and brilliant and thrilling and subtle and... ancient wine on the planet." On a local front, wine expert Bob Burchill, who spent 16 years in the business, had been waxing poetic about pinot noir long before Sideways hit theaters. He'll continue to do so, as well as share his insights about countless other wines, in a free wine-appreciation class scheduled for 6:30 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Mandel Public Library in West Palm Beach. Wine novices, intermediates, and experts alike are welcome to attend, and chances are they'll learn something from Burchill's fun, fast-paced study on how to choose, taste, and serve vino. One word of advice from Burchill: "Novices need to realize there are different components of wine. The biggest mistake they make is to get locked in with 'This wine is good, and this wine is bad.' Nobody is able to talk about why; they don't break up the components and say, 'I really love the smell but was disappointed in the taste.' "
The library is at 411 Clematis St. in West Palm Beach. Call 561-868-7701, or visit mycitylibrary.org.
Wed., Aug. 22, 6:30-8 p.m., 2012