Independent wine merchants can help polish your palate for 2013

If you've made the New Year's Resolution to improve your palate where fine wine is concerned, you might want to buy wine from independent wine merchants in the months to come.

Many independent wine merchants have tasted the wines they sell, making it possible for them to give you expert insight into what you should look for when you take your first sip.

And when you buy wine from wine merchants - whether in person or online - you can benefit from their tasting notes and recommendations of suitable foods with which to pair your chosen bottle.

Together, these kinds of insight can help you to make wine-tasting into a New Year's Resolution, and a year-round hobby.

In 2013, many people are doing just that, as online training service lovemycourse found wine-tasting and similar hobbies to be high on the agenda as New Year's Resolutions this year, particularly among retirees.

Most interestingly, the website's survey of 2,000 Brits reflected a widespread desire to take up new hobbies for fun, a move away from last year's research in which most people were keen to undertake some form of professional training and improve their employability.