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So you like lambic beers? You might also enjoy a sparkling rose. [Photograph: Maggie Hoffman]

I started out as a drinker of cocktails, never a moment of uncertainty about my gin-based Aviation. But when I reach for the wine list instead of the cocktail menu, sometimes it's still a challenge to figure out what I might like best. If that's you as well, here's a cheat sheet based on other beverages to help navigate wine picks.

If you like: Gin-based cocktails
Drink: Sauvignon Blanc. It's also clean and crisp and can have botanical notes, like gin.

If you like: Iced tea
Drink: Pinot Noir. The light-bodied red wine has some tea-like tannins.

If you like: Espresso
Drink: Shiraz/Syrah, or Malbec. If you like your coffee dark and strong, these equally dark, robust, bold wines will please.

If you like: Pina coladas
Drink: Viognier. Lush, perfumy white—but no umbrellas, please.

If you like: Corona or other lighter beers
Drink: Torrontes. White wine from Argentina that's light but flavorful and not too sweet.

If you like: Whiskey
Drink: Nebbiolo/Barolo/Barbaresco. Just as many whiskey drinkers thrive on savoring a wide range of aromas and flavors, the same challenge exists with this full-bodied Italian red.

If you like: Lambic beers
Drink: Sparkling rose. A growing number of sparkling winemakers offer rose versions, which give a bit of fruity aroma and taste to a crisp and carbonated tipple.

If you like: Pellegrino
Drink: Cava. Sparkling, dry, crisp, and refreshing.

About the author: Kara Newman has written about wine and spirits for such publications as Wine Enthusiast and Sommelier Journal magazines, and is the author of Spice & Ice, which explores 60 tongue-tingling cocktails.

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