A Wine Tasting Experience

By Steven Goller, Wine Consultant
Walpole Wine & Spirits

This wine tasting is designed to introduce you to a variety of different wines and the different styles within these popular varietals. The growing region and a brief description of varietal character follow each wine with tasting notes that are to be used as a guideline reference to help you understand what you smell and taste. Each persons taste perception of sweet, bitter, fruity and dry are unique and may differ.

Prior to tasting please take a moment to recognize the other attributes of wine that lead to its enjoyment.

Sight: Note the color and clarity of wine. It is generally a clue to what your taste buds will encounter. Light, transparent hues denote delicate structure and style, straw to golden hues and deep ruby, indicate richness and complexity (generally).

Smell: Gently swirl the wine in the glass, place your nose just over its rim and lend your senses to its perfume. The aromatic qualities contribute to the flavor and enjoyment of a wine. Aromas entice your perception of the flavor to follow. This also helps the flavors open up or become more accessible.

Taste: Take a small sip of the wine and let it envelope your whole tongue for several seconds. Notice the texture. Is the wine light or heavy, puckery (acidic) or smooth? Is the wine delicate or rich and concentrated? Are the flavors well balanced an integrated? Swallow the wine and notice the finish, crisp and clean or rich and lingering.

Enjoy the wines and have fun. Wine is also a social experience! Ask others for their thoughts and description as to aromas, tastes and flavors.

Food & Wine Pairing: Success in food and wine pairing come from a relationship of flavors. The body and style of the wine should be on par with the main course and should accent, compliment and enhance its flavors. Strong herbs and oily flavors need acidity to cut through the flavor and cleanse the palate. Don’t be afraid to experiment!

Have fun, be bold and try new things. Don’t let your taste buds get dull.

Remember, if you are unsure about a pairing, help is but a phone call away.