wine tasting



Get the best from your wine tasting

Are you a wine lover, but no expert, and unsure how a wine tasting session works?

There's nothing to be worried about, but to give you some pointers on what to look for we have put together a few notes.

Forget the snobbery and what the wine buffs do, just relax and enjoy yourself.  


The colour colour of your wine

Firstly have a good look at the colour of the wine.  White wine comes in many different shades, from almost clear through to a deep straw of golden shade.  Rose wines can be very pale or have a deeper hue and reds can be a lighter red right through a rich ruby shade to a brownish shade of red.


The bodylook for body or legs

Hold the glass up to the light and swirl the wine around.  Can you see the wine clinging to the glass or does it quickly run back down? This shows the body of the wine, how thick or thin a liquid it is.  The wine buffs refer to a wine having “legs”. If the wine clings to the glass it has legs.


Swirling the wine in your glass helps to aerate the liquid.  As wine mixes with air the full aroma and flavours are better released.

The bouquetthe wine on the nose

Next have a good sniff.  Get your nose right into the glass so you can pick up on all the smells.  The bouquet of the wine is its aroma.  The buffs will talk about the “nose”, this all means the same thing, how the wine smells.


It will take a bit of practice to detect the different smells, but they are there.  Some wines have quite complex aromas which can hint of many different things, while others are very subtle with a very subdued smell, but if you keep swirling to introduce air you will find that the aromas will develop.


OK, it’s time for a taste!  taste your wine

Have a gentle sip and swirl the wine around over your tongue to give all your taste buds a chance to sample.  It can help to suck a little air into your mouth as well (don’t be embarrassed by the noise – all the wine buffs do it). Then swallow (or spit it out if you are tasting a lot).


You will get some flavours right away as soon as you sip the wine, then others will develop as you swirl it round your mouth.  If you get some extra air sucked in this will help release the flavours more.  Finally as you swallow (or spit) you can appreciate the “finish” or the after taste of the wine.  Some wines have a long finish, or a lingering aftertaste, while others are a shorter finish, virtually no aftertaste.


Most people find that a second sip will produce a more intense flavour then the first.  This is probably because your tongue will have become accustomed to the wine and your taste buds will be more able to detect the individual flavours.


It’s a good idea to take some water between wines to clear your palate and avoid confusing one wine with another.