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Tasting Tips to Bring Out Your Inner Sommelier!

Updated: Jul 31, 2018

Hello wine lovers!

This week’s post is about tasting tips to allow you to fully enjoy your tasting experience! By following these simple tips, you can greatly enhance your tasting know-how and increase your wine knowledge. Our winemakers, Jenna Cook and Stephanie Cook Pavilonis use these same techniques during production and in the tasting room!

When doing a tasting you first want to consider the color of the wine. Is the red wine dark or more lightly colored? Is the white wine golden yellow? This is most easily done by holding your glass against something white. For example, the tasting bar at Daniel’s Vineyard and Winery is white for this exact purpose. The wine’s color tells you how old the wine is. Red wines lose their color as they age, so a dark red wine is younger than that of a lighter red wine. White wines are just the opposite; they become more golden yellow as time passes.

While checking the wine’s color, also notice the legs. A wine’s legs tells you whether or not it has a high or low alcohol and residual sugar level. Thicker legs means higher alcohol or residual sugar content.

After assessing the color of the wine, it’s time to evaluate the aromas. It is essential to swirl the wine in the glass to allow the wine’s aroma compounds to fill the air. The different aromas can give you hints about the variety of grape, the climate it was grown in, and whether it was oak-aged.

When tasting the wine, consider the length, body, dryness and sweetness. How long does the taste stay on your palate? Dryness associates with acidity. Wines with high acidity taste less sweet than those with low acidity. Sweetness is best sensed on the tip of the tongue.

During your tasting you should coat your mouth with the wine and then follow with several smaller sips. This allows you to pick out the different flavors. Try to focus on one flavor at a time, so as to not overwhelm yourself. Another small, but helpful tip is to write tasting notes. Mark your favorites as well as the wines you didn’t enjoy so you can better recall which wines are more suited to your palate. And lastly, ask questions! Never be afraid to ask questions and remember that everyone’s palate is different. What’s sweet to you may be semi-sweet to the next person!

Here at Daniel’s Vineyard, our tasting associates are well-equipped to deliver a guided tasting of our entire wine list! Spend some time in our state of the art tasting room where you can put these tips to use and enjoy the panoramic view of our vineyard!

Be on the lookout for our next post to learn about what’s happening in the vineyard and in the production room!


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