1 (866) 409-WINE (9463)
Seven to ten glasses of identical-looking wine arrayed in front of you with nothing to tell them apart can be intimidating for first-timers. But the trick to participating in a blind tasting is in learning about the small things.
Color tells a lot. With reds, a deep, dark ruby tone suggests youth, but if it’s turning “bricky” it probably has some age. With whites, a golden hue or green tinge can tell something about the type of fruit and its ripeness.
Aromas can tell if the wine has faults like corkiness, and whether it’s well made in terms of its intensity of flavor; perhaps it’s thin and astringent, or it’s masked by oak. With more experience, you might get some clues as to where the wine is from, or if it’s blended with more than one type of grape.
When you finally “taste” the wine in your mouth, you can confirm what you’ve learned with your nose, and at the same time make some discoveries about the dimensions of the wine – its acidity, bitterness, viscosity and level of tannin. You will also learn about its balance and its alcohol level, its texture and how it lingers on your palate.
Make notations as you go along, scoring each wine against the other by assessing all the “small” things that you have noted, weighing the good and the bad, what you liked and what you didn’t. Then tabulate your results for a final score. There are no rights or wrongs in a blind tasting. No wrong choices. Trust your own judgment. And as you become more adept at recognizing the small characteristics that make up a wine, it will get easier and a lot more fun.