Tasting Tips To Help You Become A Good Judge Of Wines

Here at Mid-State Wine Wholesaler, we often find that when it comes to evaluating any particular vintage, many consumers feel reluctant to consider themselves a qualified "wine judge." Feeling overwhelmed, not only with the extensive options of wines available on the market, but also with the entire evaluation process, many consumers feel like they just don't have the qualifications to be a good judge of wines themselves. Rather than sipping adventurously and trying new varietals, they leave the title of wine judge to the "experts" and simply stick with what they know when it comes to purchasing wines for themselves.


Anyone Can Become A Good Judge Of Wines

While the process can initially feel daunting, learning a few tips can help anyone become a better wine judge. Most importantly, it can be fun! Not only will you know how to analytically experience any given bottle, you'll also be able to get creative with your newfound knowledge. From new pairings with meals to trying lesser known vintages, you'll quickly be able to identify some distinctive characteristics that make for a great wine.

When tasting, it's important to analytically consider the wine's:

Structure: By definition, the bottle's structure is the way that the wine's many elements come together for an overall texture when sipped. When tasting consider whether the sip feels "firm" or "lacking" when discussing structure.

Faults: Considering the faults of the wine is another key component to becoming a good judge of wines. Things like a dull color when in the glass, an acidic taste, sulfuric scent, tiny bubbles (on wines that shouldn't have any) and an oversweet flavor are all individual indicators that the wine has faults.

Intensity: Intensity refers not only to the bouquet or aroma of the wine, but also to the direct taste as well. The more intensity a wine has, the better able a taster will be to identify the specific flavors and nuances the bottle offers.

Varietal Correctness: The overall varietal correctness stems from the type of grape that was used to create it. The general rule with varietal correctness holds that a Cabernet Sauvignon should deliver all the qualifications that a good Cab should, and not taste more like a Pinot Noir.

Test Your New Wine Tasting Qualifications

Ready to try out your newfound wine judge qualifications? A great way to reinforce your knowledge is by throwing a wine tasting party. Buy a few lesser known varietals, print off score sheets online and invite your friends over for an entire evening dedicated to practicing your tasting skills. Don't forget to compare scores at the end of the event - seeing the diversity in everyone's tasting preferences is a great way to further sharpen your own judging skills.

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