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Simple Wine Tasting Tips for Your First Wine Tasting Party
You have just received an invitation to your very first wine tasting party, and have no clue what to do or expect. Or went to one and felt completely out in the cold... everybody knew what was going on... except you.
You know that this is supposed to be fun and that it can be a great way to impress people with your wine tasting knowledge and your sophisticated palate.
There's just one teeny problem.
You donít know the first thing about wine tasting!
What if you donít know the proper way to taste wine? Surely you wouldnít want to be embarrassed in front of your friends as well as the host of the party tasting the wine the wrong way, would you?
So, here are some simple wine tasting tips for the beginner.
Remember first of all that wine tasting is a great experience, but somewhat of an intellectual one...not a race or competition. Most people who enjoy wine tasting do it in their own way but even many who seem sophisticated and knowledgeable don't really know how to taste wine.
Never forget this! Some of the coolest appearing people in the room don't actually know what they are doing.
When you come right down to it, there's one simple fact to remember: Wine tasting is not just about having something other than water in your mouth, but about knowing the wine that you are tasting.
Each wine has its own unique taste.
In fact, the "taste" of a wine is actually the result of a rich and complex blend of factors and ingredients that you need to understand and recognize. Wine tasting is not simply about taking a sip of wine, swirling it around inside your mouth, and delivering some profound observation. Especially if you are a wine tasting "newbie".
It takes some time in for you, or anyone, even the guy who seems to know it all, to learn how to identify the complexities of a wine and get its true flavor and character right. That's the essence of wine tasting...getting to the true flavor and character of each wine you taste.
This is a complex process and ability, but, a rewarding one...and...the best news...almost anyone can eventually learn to do it well.
The first lesson to learn about wine tasting for a beginner is to listen and learn. Do not be afraid to admit your ignorance, but, at the same time, do not be afraid to ask for guidance or clarification as well. These people may or may not be a bit of a snob about their wine tasting abilities, but they love to impart their wisdom to the beginner.
Overall, they will respect you more, and enjoy your company at your first wine tasting event, if you recognize them as being the "experts" and bow to their knowledge and expertise.
You see, if someone hands you a glass of wine to taste, even if you have studied and practiced a bit, you may be caught off guard.
You can only "practice" on so many wines, but each wine isn't the same when it comes to flavor, texture, or processing technique and you may be presented with one about which you know nothing. Even the age of the wine will have an effect on the taste. Don't be misled by TV shows, it is not always true that the older a wine is, the more valuable or expensive it is.
The taste and quality of a particular wine will also depend on the quality of the raw products, the grapes, which went into it. The soil in each region is different and contains a different mix of minerals. Even the amount of rainfall is also different on each region and will be a factor in the "taste" of the wine.
A simple change in any of these factors, can cause a huge difference in the taste of the final product, which is the wine you will someday be expected to pontificate about.
For now, as a wine tasting newbie, be aware that, not only are all these factors something to be considered and understood, each process of making wine is different in each region of the world, it will also contribute to the taste of the wine from that region.
As you can see, during the actual tasting process you should take some time. Donít hurry the process and just swirl it in your mouth and spit it out. You need to truly understand the wine by seeing it first, then smelling it, and, finally, tasting it.
As you can also see, you are not going to master, or even become aware of, all the secrets of wine tasting in the few days before you expect to attend your first wine tasting event. This is why I recommend admitting your ignorance and ask for guidance from someone more knowledgeable than yourself.
Here's a tip for the budding wine taster. Some specialty stores, and even some of the better grocery chains, may have wine tasting events at which they will actually let you taste wine while explaining the process of wine tasting and what you should be experiencing with the particular wine, or wines, you are sampling. Depending on where you live, you may find a wine tasting group in your particular area on sites such as MeetUp.com. For example, if you live in the Atlanta area, you could join the Wine Explorer Social Club.
You are not going to like, or become an expert on, every wine there is, but, by tasting as much wine as you can, then you will be able to improve your palate and be able to know which type of wine suits your taste buds.
It is okay to prefer a particular wine or to specialize in certain types, by the way.
Each step you take will allow you to gain experience in wine tasting so that the next time you get invited to a wine tasting party, or host your own, you will feel more comfortable in you personal skill and knowledge of wines and wine tasting. Heck, you can even go on a wine tasting holiday in some of the most prominent vineyards in the world, expanding your knowledge of wine tasting and coming in contact with others from around the world who enjoy the same things you do.
As you can see, a simple invitation to your first wine tasting party can not only blossom into an interesting and intriguing hobby, but can lead you to foreign lands and make you an expert in the eyes of people from around the globe. No, it's not just about having something other than water in your mouth, but it's about truly understanding and enjoying the complex world which is linked to each small glass of wine.
Why, you might even build your own wine cellar and become the wine tasting guru that everyone wants to have at their wine tasting event.
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