Most wine lovers, at some point, have taken the opportunity to participate in a wine tasting. In many cases, the tastings were sponsored by a commercial winery. Sometimes local merchants who sell wine will have a tasting. Even cruise lines have wine tastings on many cruises. However, did you know that it’s quite possible to turn your home bar, or wine bar, into a very professional wine tasting event!
Of course your wine tasting doesn’t necessarily have to be “professional”, but i’m sure you’d like it to be authentic and fun. This article will provide some keys to a successful wine tasting.
Home wine tasings should be rather small gatherings. Anywhere from 4-8 friends is perfect. Tell your friends to each bring a bottle of wine in a specific price range. Now, there are two schools of thought on the types of wine to bring. Some wine tastings feature all of the same type of wine, a Merlot, for example. Other tastings feature a variety of different types of wines. The single type of wine tasting is not as challenging to the taste buds, and therefore a better choice for an amateur event.
Certainly, you want your wine tasting to go as smoothly as possible. Consequently, preparation is the key. Definitely have a quality wine opener on hand. It’s well worth the investment to purchase a heavy duty commercial opener. They are fast and effortless, and seldom damage the cork. They also are much more durable then standard corkscrews. A good, modestly priced opener has two prongs that slide down the cork and help ease the cork out of the bottle has you twist. Also, make sure you have a wine bucket handy with ice, or an electric wine chiller, in case one of your guest brings a wine that needs chilling. A wine cart is a terrific way to present all the bottles, and even serve the guests as it moves around the room.
Make sure that you number the bottles and disguise the labels. Have appropriate stemware on hand for the type of wine you’re serving.
Instruct your guests to evaluate the wines using a 3 step process. First, have them look at the clarity and color. Wine should have an appealing look.After all, presentation is everything! Next, they should smell the wine. Try to get your guest’s first impressions, as they are always the most accurate. Wine aromas change the longer they meet with the air. Have your guests inhale deeply and describe what they smell. Finally, have them taste the wine. The glasses should be no more than 1/8 full. Have them roll the wine evenly around their mouths, taking in a little air. Air can enhance the flavors.
It’s interesting to note that when evaluating the wines, your guests will seldom show a consensus on which wine is “best” .Remember, this process demonstrates that we all have different tastes. There are no “right” or “wrong” judgements. The rating system is simple. The wines are scored on a 1-10 basis, with 10 being the highest. Add up the scores for each wine and divide it by the number of tasters. The highest average wins.
Wine tastings at home are not only fun, but they give you the opportunity to show off your wine furniture and wine carts. Also, they keep you experimenting, and this process will always introduce you to new “favorites best wine tours in Willamette Valley