How to do a wine tasting.
The Essence of Wine Tasting with the 7 S’s
- SEE the wine: the color, the clarity, and intensity.
- SWIRL the glass to release the aromas.
- SMELL the wine. This begins your tasting experience; discover the qualities and aromas of the wine like spicy, nutty, fruity, floral, or anything else you can use to describe what you are experiencing. There is not right or wrong answer.
- SIP the wine. Take a small amount of the wine in your mouth along with a small bit of air, almost slurping the wine in – this will aerate the wine further releasing more aromas onto your palate.
- SAVOR the wine. Swish the wine around, hitting every part of your mouth.
- SPIT/SWALLOW the wine. It is perfectly acceptable to utilize the spit buckets, especially when you are driving from winery to winery.
- SCORE the wine. Create your own scoring system and take notes. This reflects your personal experience of the wine, keep a wine journal that you can take with you to the gift shop after your tasting or to the wine store at home in the future to make your purchasing choice easy.
Define your wine
When tasting wine your primary goal should be identifying how each of the 4 key characteristics: tannin, acidity, sweetness and alcohol unfold and represent themselves to you and your senses. Smell and taste are important. However, colour and other patterns you may spot by simply looking at your glass should will help you to define your tasting experience.
Below is some Guidance from ‘Winefolly‘ to help you make notes during your tasting:
Wine tasting tips – What to look for when tasting wine
Don’t Forget Lunch
Before you crack open and start decanting your bottles awaiting tasting, be sure to eat a full breakfast. There is nothing worse than drinking on an empty stomach for your hang over the next day, and it will ensure you do not waste your tasting experience by overpowering effects of alcohol on an empty stomach.
If you are visiting wineries on a day trip in a wine growing region, many of them offer lunch and breathtaking views where you should book ahead or include lunch as part of a package. Many wineries also offer exclusive restaurants, where they will normally serve their own wine and that of surrounding area and have local staff to assist with your wine pairing selection.
If you are exploring an area and can’t be fussed planning ahead, pick up some sandwiches at the nearest township café of deli and enjoy whilst taking in the fresh air and beauty of wine country.
Patsy knows a thing or two.