Grapes Will Taste Different Coming From Different Regions
Originating in France, the cabernet sauvignon grape is now grown all over the world, and the terroir the geographic topography, soil, and climate of each region imparts its own unique twist on this adaptable grape.
Cabernet-based Bordeaux wines are full-bodied wines that smell like currants and the minerality of wet rocks. While a Cabernet from Sonoma Valley is rich and full-bodied, with notes of jammy dark fruit and spice, a Cabernet from Chile tends to be more medium-bodied, with herbal and chocolate notes.
If youve explored In Good Taste’s California Wine Mixer, we compare and explore two Cabernet Sauvignons, grown in two vastly different California regions: Game Theory Cabernet Sauvignon grown in Paso Robles, and Game Theory Cabernet Sauvignon grown in Alexander Valley. If you have not tasted our California Wine Mixer, now you have a reason to!
Sparkling Wines From Driest To Sweetest:
- Brut Nature
Sparkling wine is made from a wide range of red and white grapes. Champagne proper is made from Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier and/or Pinot Noir.
Increasingly, wine drinkers and producers are using the term sparkling wine and champagne interchangeably, in the same way we might call any facial tissue a Kleenex. Purists insist that only wine produced in the Champagne region of France should rightfully be called champagne or Champagne, but there are no laws in the U.S. governing that distinction. So, if you think youre getting a steal on a bottle of imported champagne for only $12, you should probably check the label a bit more closely.
Clean Wine Is Not A Thing
You’ve probably heard of it: “clean” or “chemical-free” wine. While these terms may seem transparent, many in the wine industry see them as merely a marketing ploy to infiltrate the booming wellness market and leach away more of your hard-earned money.
All wine has sulfites. These sulfites, or sulfur-based salts, are a natural product of the fermentation process. Sulfites help to preserve the wine and protect from premature oxidization, bacteria, and yeasts.
Many large commercial winemakers add additional sulfites, along with other FDA-approved additives, to stabilize the wine and limit vintage variation so that each batch tastes the same. If you want to avoid these additives, look for organic wines that do not contain added sulfites.
Further, wine does not contain any artificial flavorings. While you may taste baked apples, vanilla, and butter in your glass of Chardonnay, these occur naturally using centuries-old methods of fermentation, aging, and oak. Wine cannot be made by simply pouring grape juice into a barrel and leaving it to ferment. There is a science that goes into winemaking.
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A Guide To Wine Tasting: Sight Smell & Taste
Wine tasting is a fascinating pastime that engages all the senses. Dont let it be intimidating or overly complicated. Were removing the stigma surrounding wine, showing you that it can be a fun endeavor, whether youre an expert or a beginner!
Well walk you through some basic steps and vocabulary of wine tasting to get you started. By thoroughly engaging in the whole tasting experience, you can elevate your enjoyment of wine even further, and thats what we at Brooklyn Winery love to see!
Taste As Much As Possible
Most sommeliers agree that tasting as much as possible is the best way to learn about wine. Ronald Buyukliev, lead sommelier at Estiatorio Milos at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, uses a two-step approach. First, you have to read. Once you have down, you have a solid theoretical background and can go to step two, which is taste. Buyukliev suggests familiarizing yourself with the classic style of the region first to best understand the typicity of a classic regional bottle. For instance, if you’re curious about Tuscan wine, start by trying a Chianti Classico rather than a red from a more obscure part of the region.”Katherine Dandridge, sommelier at Quill, recommends following tasting up with doing something related to the region. Reading about the history or eating regional food helps to enhance my overall enjoyment of the wine by setting the scene, she says.
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Level 3 Professional Wine Tasting
So, full of hope, I registered for WSET Level 3. I chose the online class because I have a full time job. With this course tasting starts to be important. The recommended tasting wine list was longer and surprise, surprise: there was a blind tasting in the exam. Ouch!
WSET organised a one-day tasting technique class at the beginning of the course, but I did not find it mind-blowingly useful. You have no theoretical knowledge from the course at that point and its a struggle not only with calibration is my full bodied the same as yours or WSETs, for example. Worse you have almost no frame of reference or understanding of the concepts described. This is an important class so if you are taking it, I would recommend preparing for it very carefully.
Appearance Aroma And Mouthfeel: All You Need To Know To Give Wine Tasting A Go
So you like drinking wine, but dont actually know much about it? You want to feel more confident when talking about wine? You would like to know how to choose a good wine? You are not alone but I am here to help.
Many of us enjoy drinking wine but do not really understand or appreciate the complexity of this amazing beverage. And many feel nervous about discussing wines, thinking they may say the wrong thing.
Fear not there is no right or wrong when appreciating wine, however the more you know and understand, the more you will really treasure and enjoy the experience of wine tasting.
Here are my top tips for giving wine tasting a go.
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The Best Way To Learn Is To Sip
There are so many types of wine on the market, with different regions, varietals, winemaking styles, etc. The best way to learn about and get familiar with the wines you like is to taste them!
One of the great things about In Good Taste’s tasting kits is that they help you enjoy and learn about many different varietals you may not have tried before. Our tasting wine flights feature eight six-oz bottles so you can try new wines with minimal commitment. Maybe you will taste something that blows you away and want to taste and learn more about that particular wine. On the other hand, you may taste something you are not really a fan of, which is fine too! Its all about learning what pleases your palate!
Experienced sommeliers travel to taste different wines in different regions. W are constantly trying to explore and learn. But you do not have to be a wine pro to do this, just a lover of wine. Travel the wine world from your living room with Tasting Flights from In Good Taste.
Why Wine Doesnt Taste The Same Year To Year
Does this ever happen to you? You find a stupid-awesome wine and you buy a ton of it. Eventually you drink up your stash and buy more, except the new wine doesnt taste the way you remember. Youre not crazy. Check the vintage, more than likely youre a victim of Vintage Variation. Vintage variation happens more often in cooler climate regions. So if youre a Pinot Noir lover, pay attention to vintage.
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How Can A Wine With No Sugar Still Taste Sweet
In the wine world we call this trait fruit forward. How is it that a completely dry wine can taste sweeter than other wines? There are a few factors that go into this phenomenon including grape variety, region and oak aging. For instance, if you have a Malbec from France compared to a Malbec from Argentina, the latter tastes sweeter. The region where the grapes grow greatly affects the flavor.
Have A Designated Driver
Wine tasting can get you drunk. As such, its vital to have a designated driver so you and your wine tasting companions can make it safely through your experience. That doesnt mean one of you has to sit it out though. Did you know you can taste multiple delicious wines without drinking a single drop?Every winery should be able to provide a metal bucket for your wine tasting. This bucket is for spitting in. Thats right, its completely acceptable and sometimes even encouraged to spit your wine out at a wine tasting. This lets you appreciate all the wines you want without falling flat on your face by the end of the evening. It might also be worth hiring Private Wine Drivers to shuttle you around for the day.
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And How To Appreciate
The best way to really appreciate and enjoy wine is to talk about it. Enjoy wine with others such as a group of friends or a local wine enthusiast group. Taste wines side by side so you can compare the differences.
There is a wealth of information on wine appreciation available wine critics give reviews of wines in print and online, and most larger wine retailers will also provide wine reviews. Or get out to wineries and talk to the cellar door staff or winemakers about their wines. It is very useful to talk to other people as this helps you to build up your wine vocabulary.
Consider the appearance, aroma and taste and then the overall impression of the wine. Your opinion is your opinion – nobody is right and nobody is wrong. If you want to go back for another taste, or another glass, then you have found the wine for you.
Skip The Perfume Or Cologne
Smell is one of the main components of wine tasting. Thats because taste and smell are intimately connected.If you wear perfume or cologne, or smoke right before a tasting, it can affect the tasting experience for you and everyone around you.When your nose is full of perfume, it cant pick up on all the aromatics and flavors in your wine. Therefore, its proper tasting-room etiquette to show up scent-free when learning how to taste wine.
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Wine Tasting In Bordeaux
As you would expect there are a number of specialised wine tours around the Bordeaux area, some offering day tours, others offering multi-day tours.
It really all depends if you are more interested in exploring the lovely city of Bordeaux or if you are seriously interested in learning about the wine produced here. If you do plan to visit the vineyards independently then book well in advance, most chateaux only receive visitors by appointment.
Going with a guide means that you will learn a great deal more about the area and its most famous export. Our 3-night Bordeaux wine tasting tour includes 2 full days of wine tasting, private transfers with a knowledgeable English-speaking guide to both left bank and right bank vineyards, and 2 gourmet lunches. By then end of it you will know a great deal more about Bordeaux wines than when you started!
Most Of The Wines Sold On The Market Are Meant To Be Enjoyed Immediately
It may sound shocking, but its true: about 90% of the wines sold each day are produced not to be cellared and aged but to be enjoyed within 18 months of production. And while young wines typically have more astringent tannins, simply aerating or decanting your wine can help to soften or mellow these and help enhance other aromas and flavors that may have been suppressed in the bottle.
No need to overthink whether or not you should save that bottle of Riesling until your 10th anniversary you should probably just go ahead and drink it. This includes most of your most commercially popular wines. Order, drink up, and restock!
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Getting Started With Wine Tasting
Learning to taste wine is no different than learning to really appreciate music or art in that the pleasure you receive is proportionate to the effort you make. The more you fine-tune your sensory abilities, the better youre able to understand and enjoy the nuances and details that great wines express. The time and effort invested in palate training is rewardingand very, very fun.
Labels Can Tell You A Lot
The label on your wine bottle can tell you more than just the vintage and alcohol content .
For instance, while both are made from the chardonnay grape, you may be amazed at the variance in flavors between a Napa Valley Chardonnay and a Chablis . The former will be packed with aromas of baked apples and cooked lemon, whereas the latter unoaked Chablis is celebrated for its purity in aroma and taste, and will be void of the classic California notes of butter and oak. When searching for a Riesling, keep in mind that a Riesling with a lower alcohol percentage will give way to sweeter wine types than a Riesling with higher alcohol content.
A general rule of thumb is that Old World wine coming from Europe may be significantly more earth-driven, with enticing notes of mushroom, tobacco, or barnyard, compared to more fruit-centered wines coming from New World regions, such as South America or the U.S.
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Wine Tasting In Porto: Where When And How
Most people dont realise how much there is to know about wine tasting in Porto.Besides the famous Port wine cellars, there are some amazing wine bars in the city waiting for you, and great wines at very affordable prices that you can buy at supermarkets. Come with me and lets take a look at the amazing wine world in Porto!
How Best To Taste
When attending a wine tasting that doesnt utilize black glasses, make a visual check of the wine under neutral lighting. Breathe through your nose and identify the aroma of the wine. Assess the taste structure of the wine, and swirl the wine gently in your mouth to engage all taste buds before swallowing.
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Things To Know Before Your Wine Tasting
If youve never done a wine tasting before, there is nothing to be intimidated by. While there is no true right or wrong way to taste wine, there are a few tips to help you enjoy the entire experience and get the full effect of the wine. Many people know these as the 5 Ss of wine tasting. Any time you are trying a new wine, make sure to follow our wine tasting guide.
Understanding Wine Is A Process
Take the next month to buy one new bottle of wine a week . Uncork and take a few moments to taste and describe it using the descriptors above. Make sure you try a different type of wine each week and repeat the same process. At the end of the month you’ll start to feel more comfortable with the vocabulary of wine, which can have a profound effect on your enjoyment.
At the end of the day, you really cant make a wrong choice. As long as you pay attention to what it is that you dont like about a wine, each bottle will get you closer to what you do like. Take it one glass at a time and dont be afraid to admit it if you cant quite put your finger on something. Focus on enjoying your winethats the entire point.
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Grape Grower Can Have An Impact On Quality And Flavor
Since red grapes contain anthocyanins, they also produce some different flavors in wine. For example, cabernet sauvignon grapes are a type of red grape typically used to make red wine. These grapes come from California, and they have a strong flavor profile that includes fruity, woodsy, and herbal notes.
Contrastingly, chardonnay grapes are a type of white grape that is typically used to make white wine. Chardonnay grapes are grown in France, and they have a more floral flavor. This is because different types of anthocyanin molecules produce different flavors.
Leaning How To Taste Wine
Learning wine tasting from scratch is not easy. After my one-day tasting class I realised how weak I was when it comes to my tasting technique. I bought a number of books to help, listened to podcasts, especially the Guild of Sommeliers excellent series. And I even searched the internet looking for a manual on how to become a tasting guru in ten easy steps. You might say that one cant learn to dance by reading a book and it may be the same with wine tasting. But its disappointing that there isnt a simple and practical book to get you started.
Ive also learned that developing your own tasting techniques needs time, practice and cross checking with other people. I guess you need to be patient with yourself and try to attend as many tasting sessions as possible.
But in the meantime, if you dont have time nor patience, or too much money to spend on tasting classes, what do you do? Hands on, full of enthusiasm I started my journey to become a blind tasting guru. During this process I felt like a spy, trying to gather as much intel to build my own map of professional tasting.
I might be wrong, I might be right, but here is my personal guide to becoming a tasting guru in 10 simple steps, based on what I learned over the last year and a half.
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