Before you travel to your local winery or the nearest wine trail, consider that your wine tasting experience will involve several of your senses. To get the most from your visit, and to help you more readily identify your favorite wines for a purchase, let's talk about how to approach wine tasting in general. And while wine tasting shouldn't be complicated or intimidating, here are seven tips to consider:
Limit Your Use Of Cologne Or Perfume: These scents, while generally pleasing, will affect your ability to pick up wine aromas. In turn, this will alter your ability to judge a wine's true taste. And, these scents will affect the senses of your fellow wine tasters as well.
Bring Bottled Water Along: Most tasting rooms will offer water with your tastings to help cleanse your palate. But if you're visiting more than one winery, it's a good idea to hydrate in between winery visits. Not only will this help keep your palate fresh, but will help minimize the effect of alcohol.
Call Ahead: Wineries will occasionally host large tour groups, and if so, it might not be the best time for you to visit. Staff might be overwhelmed and you might not receive the attention you might otherwise expect. A quick phone call in advance will help you schedule the best time for you and the winery staff.
Follow The Progression: Be sure to go with the flow at the tasting counter. Wines are poured, and tasted, from light to dry to sweet for a reason. For example, if you start your tasting with a big bold red wine, it will adversely affect a light, dry white.
Hold The Cheese: Sometimes a tasting room will offer cheese samples along with the wine tasting. Try to hold off on the cheese, because cheese will alter your perception of the wine's taste. You can always pair up an appropriate cheese with your favorite wine later.
Keep An Open Mind: You may already have a definite opinion of what types of wines you enjoy. But keeping an open mind has its advantages! Try different styles. You might find a new favorite, and it's a great way to learn more about wine.
Just about every winery will offer you a warm, friendly wine tasting experience. Have fun, ask questions, and compare notes with friends. Wine is meant to be shared and enjoyed, and what better place to do it than at that special small winery on a scenic wine trail.