Here is a simple guideline that will help you learn how to taste wine and develop your palate along the way


You can evaluate wine in four simple steps

cattunar winemaker tasting great red wine in the wine cellar
Baraka Winery - winemaker tasting
clos de luz visitor tasting magnificient wine from giant glass

LOOK   


You can learn a lot about wine from the colour. In red wines, if there are any purple hues in the wine, generally, this means the wine is young. If there are more brick red or orange hues in the spectrum, the wine may be older.

In white wines, a more golden yellow colour rather than pale light yellow could mean the wine is older, the wine has been in oak, or the wine is sweeter.

If the white or red wine is clear and bright in colour, rather than opaque and cloudy, this is a good sign that the wine is sound and clean.

SMELL   


Next, swirl the wine in your glass, so the aromatic compounds are released, then slightly lower your nose towards the rim of the glass to take in the aroma. A few short puffs of air in through the nose will help you assess the smell of the wine best.

The initial aromas can be an excellent introduction to the wine. Try to identify different fruit aromas as well as any spices, earthy notes, or other aromas that come to mind. As a good rule of thumb, try to recognize at least three different aromas to describe a wine.

TASTE


The first sip of wine should be generous, one that can coat the inside of your mouth, so all of your taste buds get a sample. There will be tastes on the tongue and palate, such as sweet or bitter. You may also identify more fruit aromas, oak, or earth flavours once the wine is inside your mouth. Feel free to assess the texture of the wine. It may feel light or heavy, soft or rough, dry, or luscious and has an impact on your overall impression of the wine.

müller-burggraef winemaker tasting great wine in tasting room

MAKE YOUR OWN IMPRESSIONS


After you have worked through these three steps, you can give your overall impression of the wine. Trust your senses and simply observing what you are seeing, smelling, and tasting can help you decide how you feel about the colour as well as your thought on aromas and flavours. Do they leave a positive impression? Or a negative one? Congratulations, as this is the beginning to understanding wine.

The best way to develop your palate is to taste more wine. Practice makes perfect. As you become more familiar with different wines, it becomes easier to identify certain aromas, tastes, and textures in wine typical of each varietal and region. Above all, enjoy!

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