If you love drinking wine, then you may have wondered how to taste wine properly can truly elevate your experience.
How to Taste Wine: Environment
One of the most important things is to create the right environment. Odors such as cooking smells, pets, or perfume will affect the wine’s aroma. Using the wrong glass or serving wine at the incorrect temperature can even affect the wine’s flavor.
Try to move away from anyone wearing strong perfume. It is possible to condition your glass by swilling some wine and pouring it out. Wait for your wine to be the right temperature before serving and eat neutral foods to cleanse your palate.
How to Taste Wine: Look
The first part of tasting wine is to look at it.
Start by observing the color, holding it to the light and noticing the clarity of the wine. Then you swirl your glass, which will increase the surface area of the wine and allow oxygen in. This helps to open up the aromas.
If you notice particularly cloudy wine, you may want to check if it smells bad, as this may be a sign that it is past its best.
Look at the legs of the wine. These are the drips of wine that run down the inside of the glass. If the legs are thick and slow moving this indicates higher alcohol and sugar content, which will usually have a fuller mouthfeel. If you see thinner legs, then this will usually be a lighter wine.
How to Taste Wine: Smell
Sniff the wine several times and then concentrate on all the aromas that you are experiencing. If there is a dusty, leathery, or vinegar smell, then the wine may be past its best. You may recognize floral, fruity, herby, spicy or mineral scents. These come from the grapes themselves.
There are also secondary aromas, which come from the winemaking process. These include smells of cheese rind, nuts or beer, as they usually come from the yeast. Tertiary aromas come from the aging process and might include a scent of toast, smoke or vanilla.
The Final Essential Element: Taste
After observing and smelling, you get to taste the wine! Take a sip and roll it around in your mouth to see what you can taste.
You may notice that different flavors occur during the beginning, middle and end of your drinking experience. You might also notice the texture of the wine. Some will be thin and almost watery, but wines increase in richness as they increase in alcohol.
When you take a second sip of wine, try to draw some air into your mouth, then breath out of your nose. This process will aerate the wine slightly and help you to identify more of the flavors.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our wine tasting tips. Remember that the most important thing is to enjoy your wine and have fun with it. If you want to try tasting different wines with different cheeses, why not pick up our White Wine Collection or Red Wine Collection?