ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Wine Tasting Made Easy

Updated on October 5, 2016
Wine Tasting Made Easy
Wine Tasting Made Easy

There’s no great mystery to wine tasting - it simply is what it says.

Wine tasting is all about experiencing the flavors in the grape and learning to appreciate the individuality of the different varieties on offer.

If you’ve never done it before then try it at home, perhaps with a few friends. First take three of four different varieties of wine (red, white, rose - or a mixture of all three). It should be a light-hearted occasion with perhaps everyone contributing a bottle. Make a note of each bottle’s name, its manufacturer and year produced and arm yourself with a glass for each bottle and a notepad for your findings.

Open the bottle with a good opener being sure not to leave any cork behind in the bottle, as this can affect the taste and opacity of the wine.

Now pour a little wine into the glass (a fifth of a glass is adequate for tasting purposes). Notice the color of the wine as it enters the glass and hold it up to the light so that you take a better look at its tone and opacity. Make a note of its shade; if it’s a red wine, is it a light cherry shade, a rich damson red, or does it have an even deeper burgundy tone? If it’s a white wine, is it a gold or amber-toned white, or does it have a fresher citrus tone? If it’s rose, is it a warm rose-petal pink, or does it have cooler violet tones? Whatever your findings - note them down next to the name of the wine.

The color is an indicator of the flavors and fullness of the wine. Now give the wine a good swirl in the glass and, again, hold it up to the light. You may notice ‘legs’ trailing down the glass as the flavors of the wine all meld together. Again make a note of this.

Now bring the glass up to your nose and inhale deeply. Close your eyes and try to ‘see’ the ingredients that make up the wine you are smelling. For example, you might get a strong aroma of strawberries, plums or cherries, or pick up elements of lemony zest, or even spicy cinnamon or chocolate notes. Again, write your findings down.

Now inhale the wine again but this time bring it up to your lips with the flavors you have ‘pictured’ clearly in your mind. Close your eyes again and take a good sip of the wine. What are your initial thoughts at it hits your mouth? It might be immediately fresh and vibrant, it might be soft and melony, it might be rich and jammy.

Swirl the wine around in your mouth letting it coat every part and, as you do so, purse your lips as if you are about to whistle and then breathe in just a little air to fully release the flavors of the wine. Don’t breathe in too much or you may find yourself coughing - practice makes perfect!

Now hold the wine in your mouth for a few moments more before letting it slide seductively down your throat (professional wine tasters wouldn’t swallow of course but this is a more personal and fun experiment). Make a note of all the flavors that you have tasted and of the ones that linger on in your mouth after you have swallowed. Wines that continue to linger are said to have a long finish. If you find this to be the case, then again, make a note of it.

Don’t forget to provide a good sized jug of water and additional glasses, so that all of your guests can thoroughly cleanse their palates between tastings.

You may consider reading the wine labels, with their description of the grapes and flavors before tasting, but I would suggest leaving this until the end of the tasting and then testing your abilities to see whether you picked up on those listed. It all adds to the experience and can boost your confidence if you’re new to the experience.

One last thing; if possible, take either a photocopy of each wine label or, better still, the labels themselves and attach them to your notes so that you can, over time, build up a collection of your favorite varieties.

Happy Tasting!

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • eventsyoudesign profile image

      eventsyoudesign 

      7 years ago from Nashville, Tennessee

      Great article. I really enjoyed this one.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      9 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Well written advice on how to enjoy a wine tasting. Always proceed from lightest to heaviest, in other words first taste the whites and proceed on to the reds.

      My husband actually teaches wine classes.

      Cheers!

    • Paraglider profile image

      Dave McClure 

      9 years ago from Kyle, Scotland

      That's a good summary of one of life's harmless pleasures. Well done :)

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)