tips for tasters
If you're new to wine tasting, here are a few tips that will help you navigate the world of wine. If you're a seasoned taster, these are great reminders that wine tasting doesn't have to be about fancy, expensive wines, but about experimenting.
Go to as many wine tastings as you can. Many wine retailers host free wine tastings on a regular basis and this is a great place to try new wines. There are also classes (which you already know about because you're on our mailing list!), wine tasting dinners at local restaurants, and plenty of wine tasting benefits supporting local causes.
Make friends with someone knowledgeable in your local wine store. They will be a good, and willing, source of information on all things wine and can point you in a new direction.
Experiment! Experiment!Experiment! Don't be afraid to try a bottle of wine that has apparently "alien" text on the label. It's possible you'll be turned onto a gem of a bottle... if you love it, it's a great dinner-party conversation point. Look in the non-domestic wine sections and pick a price point that works for you, get some advice and go for it. There are some obscure varietals out there which are worth trying. Ever had a Grillo from Italy, an Austrian Blaufränkisch, Seyval Blanc from New York State, or a French Tennat? All really delicious, but a little harder to find.
Open yourself to trying a new wine every week or month. It doesn't have to be expensive. Just steer clear of the bulk brands and don't fall into the trap of drinking the same varietal over and over again. You'll skew your palate!
If you find a wine you like, buy a few bottles but don't fill your cellar with it. Your tastes will change and evolve as you learn and experiment, so keep your cellar diverse.
Flirt with food and wine pairings. Good pairings will take your wine appreciation to another level and keep you interested in trying new combinations. If in doubt, do a little research online for some guidelines.
Don't get hung up on trying & buying wines with high ratings. Highly rated wines are usually good, but plenty of great wines are unrated... wineries don't always want to send precious wines to the raters for review, so the best review is your own palate.
Keep a wine tasting journal and take notes, or take a photo of the label if you're a visual person! Even if your notes are simply - "I loved this wine", "smells like a barnyard but tastes amazing.." or more detailed about the aroma, flavor and texture of the wine, if it works for you, stick with it. It's fun to look back and see what you've tasted and how your tastes have changed.
wine & food page - Visit our wine & food page for a rustic, tasty Lentil & Mushroom Crepe recipe. Feel free to share your own great pairings with us and tell us if you've tried out our recipes!
news & events page - Check out our news & events page for wine related events and class updates. Let us know if there's an event you think is worth sharing and we'll post it here.
fun facts & wine terminology - What's our new fun wine fact and new wine term? Visit our homepage to find out. Feel free to email us requests.
Our wine quiz will test your wine region knowledge this time around. Click here for the answers.
1. Where is the Columbia Valley wine region?
2. Jumilla is a wine region in which country?
3. What French wine region does the wine Chateauneuf-du-Pape come from?
4. Which region in Argentina is best known for Malbec and Torrentes?
5. In which country is the wine region of McLaren Vale?