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Wine Tasting - 4 Simple Steps

Jun 23, 2008
Tasting wine is more complex then simply drinking. Wine tasting is about more than hydration. It is a whole different experience than what you may be used to when drinking. It is more like tasting food. You want to enjoy the wine and to experience the wine.

Knowing the proper way to taste wine will allow to you appreciate the art that goes into the creation of each bottle. It will also show others that you are serious about wine and that you understand the complexity of wine tasting. It also shows you have respect for the wine and for those who made it because you are doing much more than tasting, but you are taking in every aspect of the wine.

Step 1: Look at the wine after pouring it. When the wine is first poured, before you do anything else you have to look at the wine. This is best done against a plain light colored background that will allow you to see the colors and the depth of the wine. You want to look for streaks of color or subtle hints of color variations. Make a note of the coloring you see.

Step 2: Swirl the wine in the glass. Once you have looked at the wine and noted its coloring after pouring, you can swirl it slightly in the glass. Swirl enough to get the wine to coat the glass, but avoid swirling too vehemently. After you swirl you will want to look at the wine again and note the coloring changes. Major changes mean the wine is a more complex wine. No changes means the wine is a simpler wine.

Step 3: Small the wine. After you swirl the wine and note the coloring and look again you will smell the wine. Take in the aroma and look for hints of familiar smells. You want to note the things you smell for the next step. You'll learn terms to describe each scent as you progress.

Step 4: Taste the wine. Finally you are at the part where you can taste the wine. Do not just drink and swallow, though. You should take a small amount into your mouth and swirl it around. This allows you to get the full flavor of the wine. You should then draw in a bit of air and swirl again. You should note the tastes at this time. Also see if you pick up the hints of flavor that you smelled. Now you can swallow. Be sure to note the aftertaste.

Tasting wine is not simple, that is for sure. With these four steps, though, you can master wine tasting like a pro. You will find that following the four step approach will allow you to enjoy the wine more and also allow you to develop a good taste for the differences between wines. You will soon be on your way to being a wine expert who can recognize a merlot or chardonnay without ever looking at the bottle.

It can take time to really learn the art of wine tasting, but practicing is fun. You'll discover a whole new appreciation of wine, gain new skills and have a fun and interesting hobby.
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