Wine tasting tips

The Bordeaux Wine Awards competition calls upon several hundreds of professional tasters: wine experts, cellar masters, merchants, wine stewards, wine brokers, specialised journalists, among others. The decision of whether or not to award the medal is taken collectively after individual analysis of each sample. You cannot learn how to taste wine just by snapping your fingers. Would you like an introduction? Here are a few very simple exercises taken from “Découvrir la dégustation”, a book giving an introduction to wine tasting published by Feret.

These exercises can enhance your appreciation of the fullness of the wine, which is the 3rd stage in wine tasting after the colour and the nose. They require you to prepare solutions that will then be presented blindly. By blocking your nose during the tasting, you eliminate any olfactory sensations that may add to the sensations of taste with some preparations. It is fun to do this among friends…

Discovery exercises

The aim is to identify simple, isolated sensations of taste from materials that are commonly found in kitchens. Test the following mixtures to remind yourself of all the tastes and flavours recognised by our palates. The results will surprise you!

Add ½ teaspoon of white vinegar or 1 teaspoon of lemon juice to 1/20 l of water.

Add 1 teaspoon of caster sugar to 1/20 l of water.

Add ½ a demitasse spoon of table salt to 1/20 l of water.

Mix 1 teaspoon of ground coffee in 1/20 l of cold water. Filter the solution.

Bite on grape seeds or let them macerate in water for one night, after crushing them.

Dilute 1 teaspoon of eau de vie or odourless vodka in 1/20 l of water.

Menthol: Soak 1 tablet of menthol chewing-gum in ¼ l of water.

Take 1 demitasse spoon of pepper and add to 1/20 l of water.