Guest Writer: Kryin Sowah
Are you trying to learn the basics of wine tasting? Maybe you’re tired of being intimidated at your friends wine tasting parties or just looking to make the transition from a novice wine drinker to a sommelier if so this is for you!
First, a brief history lesson. People have been drinking wine since 7000 BCE, though techniques of wine tasting have not been formalized until the 14th century. Within that time, people discovered many uses for wine, such as art, injury disinfectants, pain relief, and even used for purifying their water.
The first step to wine tasting is sight, you may be asking yourself, what does sight has to do with tasting? Well everything, really. The color value and the difference between a clear and cloudy wine, can intensify the flavor one will experience when tasting. The lighter shades of wine will be more acidic opposed to darker shades that are less acidic.
The second step is smell what sommeliers refer to as the “bouquet”. The key to this step is to let the wine oxygenate for 5-10 minutes before enjoying. Awaken the wine by swirling it in your glass by aerating the wine. When time allows, tilt the glass towards your nose and sniff the subtle notes of fruits and aromas.
Lastly, once the sense of smell and sight have been engaged you are ready to taste. Tasting is not simply to sip and swallow. Identifying what it is that you are tasting is a very important part of the process, ask yourself does the wine taste earthy, smoky, fruity or any other flavor that comes to mind. By following, these simple steps you will be a wine aficionado in no time at all.
You may say to yourself, that’s all well and good but how does one differentiate a good wine from others? The truth is, it is all a matter of your personal taste. Don’t let others influence your choices on what is deemed as a good or bad wine any wine that you enjoy is a good wine.