Wine tasting is an art, being able to fully appreciate the aromatic and flavor nuances of the best wine is a matter of skill, instinct and also practice. A good wine taster must not only know about wines, but must also be aware of the entire process of making and growing the grapes. This article explains step by step how to taste a wine.
Wine tasting requires a learning process, since it is not only necessary to be able to recognize the aromas and flavors of the wine, but also the memory must be put into operation, which will be in charge of translating and interpreting all the sensations that form part of a wine analysis.
This learning also requires internalizing a series of techniques that are part of wine tasting. It is not just a tasting, you have to know the vocabulary associated with wine, the production processes and you also have to be an expert in the criteria used to judge the quality of the wine. To develop these techniques, wine tasters must try a wide variety of wines, to accustom their palate, this being a long and patient process that, in many cases, has a large part of subjectivity.
How to learn about wines?
To become a wine expert, it is first necessary to be open to conscious learning of this technique. To develop the necessary skills for wine tasting, the user must taste many different wines. In this sense, wines of different quality and origin should be taken, as well as wines of all types such as white, rosé and red.
It is also necessary to know the main characteristics of the wines of different Denominations of Origin, as well as the characteristics of the different wine regions and the different winemaking styles. During this wine tasting process, you must develop your own method and style that, over time, should be used in each new tasting.
In this sense, you must learn about wine knowing and developing the vocabulary of the world of tasting, so you will have to invest time in finding the terms that describe each aroma or flavor with greater precision. To do this, the user can use the different wine guides that exist on the market, where you will find detailed descriptions of the flavors, aromas and colors of the wines.
These first steps, which will be the most complicated, can be carried out with the help of a professional, for example, by going to tastings and wine tastings. Another good practice to get started in the world of wine is to do blind tastings, so that the user is not influenced by the labels or the prices of the bottle, in addition, by not being able to see, the rest of the senses will be more “awake”. ”, so the sensations will be better perceived.
How do you taste a wine?
Wine tasting involves making a conscious analysis of all the sensations that wine produces. Like any analytical task, the tasting must be carried out in parts, dividing the sensations into senses: sight, smell and taste.
The first analysis of the wine will take place with the eye. The wine must be viewed with good lighting and on a white background, always from bottom to top, tilting the glass until it is almost horizontal. At this point, the color, the shades of the border and the piping are examined.
At sight, the wine must be clean and bright, if it is not, it may have a bitter taste. The taster must also be able to distinguish the nuances of its color; the pale, golden or greenish of white wines, as well as the pink, ruby or garnet tones of red. The nuances show us the maturity of the wine, therefore, the best red wine loses its red tone as it ages, while the white acquires more color.
At the same time, fluidity and edging should be observed. For fluidity, the glass must be held from the foot and rotated and observe the amount of wine that is “stuck” to the wall of the glass. The denser the wine, the higher its alcohol content. On the other hand, the rims show the state of evolution of the wine, thus the whites have paler rims and the more mature reds will have a tile-colored rim.
Much of the flavor comes from smell. To capture the aromas of the wine, you have to smell it in moderation, to prevent the alcohol vapors from numbing the senses. To fully perceive the aroma, you must leave a time between each inhalation and move your face slightly.
At this point we will seek to distinguish the aroma and the bouquet. The first is the smell that comes from the fermentation of the grape, these are usually fresh and fruity aromas. The bouquet is the smell that comes from aging. To capture these nuances, the wine should be stirred slightly, alternating between long, deep inhalations and short, vigorous inhalations.
The first nuance that we will notice will be that of the fruit, followed by the aromas that come from the barrels and from the maturation.
In the mouth, the wine taster will seek to distinguish between body, temperature, astringency, effervescence and texture. In short, white wines have more fruity and citrus flavors like lemon, pear or apricot. On the other hand, red wines have similar tastes to forest fruits such as cherries, currant or blackberry.
The body of the wine describes the sensation that the liquid produces in the mouth, if it is thick, with a lot of alcohol or if it is fluid. In the case of temperature, it describes the degrees at which the wine should be consumed, for example, white wines are drunk fresh and red wines at room temperature.
As for astringency, it seeks to describe the sensation of dryness that it leaves on the gums, the palate or the mouth, this sensation is produced by the tannins of the wine. As for the texture, it is about defining the quality of the wine and how clean the liquid is.
Finally, when sparkling wines are tasted, effervescence can also be described, which is the quality and quantity of bubbles in the wine.