The journey to discover wine tasting begins in the glass.
Already at first sight the wine speaks of itself, of its history. It’s like the first encounter with a handsome stranger. I do not know who he is, but his look is familiar to me and, at first sight, I can make assumptions.
Firstly I should check if my wine has an attractive, bright and pleasant color. A little dull or matt color can be a warning, because it indicates oxidation: my wine may have been improperly stored or it have reached the end of its history. When I am at the restaurant, if I am served with a wine whose color is bad, I should check immediately its scent and, often, I do not even need to taste it to send it back firmly.
Swirling the glass, the wine creates tears and arches, that give us some information on the texture of the wine. An aged wine, that is a bit denser, will leave thick, viscous streaks (called legs or tears) down the sides of the glass when swirled. When the tears are slow and the arches are thick and tight , the wine has a great texture.
However, if the tears are fast and the arches are wide, such as with still water, probably the wine is young and has not been stored in barrel.
In the next post I will talk about which information provides the color of the wine during the visual examination.
Life is full of surprises and our perceptions are a continuum of stimuli and complexity , so many that we have not enough words to express what we feel. Moreover do you know that humans have an unlimited number of perceptions? It has not yet been invented a machine to analyze a scent, like a good nose trained.
That's why I'm here, telling you how to use your senses while tasting your glass of wine.
Wine should be tasted with 3 of our senses organs : sight, olfaction and taste.
To get the highest pleasure from a wine, is not enough to drink it. There exist steps and rules to better get it, that can be sum up in the the "5 S" :
See - Swirl - Sniff - Sip - Savor
To have a satisfactory sensory examination, it is important before tasting, to learn how to properly hold the glass.
Hold the glass by the stem is elegant and correct for 3 reasons :
SEE. You can more easily see the beauty of the wine color, which gives us a lot of information about wine. Looking instead our fingers or fingerprints on the "rim points" is not nearly as pleasant.
SWIRL and SNIFF. Swirling the wine in the glass, you can unleash a greater quantity of volatile substances, so you concentrate the aromas, sniffing them in full. Holding the stem allow you to have your hand far from your nose, appreciating better the wine perfumes instead of your hand lotion ones.
SWIRL and SAVOR. Swirling the glass, the wine molecules cling to the glass, forming tears and arches, which provide information on the texture of the wine.
If you are interesting in wine tasting and you would like a wine-training video course in english, send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org