to Host a Wine Tasting Party
by Stuart Glasure
Looking to have
some fun with friends while sharing some wine? You should consider
hosting a wine tasting party. It's a really neat way to share your
wine favorites and to be introduced to a variety of new and
interesting wines. You can also add some spice to your fun by using a
wine theme ("All About Reds", "Blindfold Tasting",
need a lot of guests to have a great party. What I have found works
best is to have about four to twelve people, and definitely include
yourself as one of the registered guests. Also, I like to always have
a contest during the party and give away a gift.
Pick a fun theme,
and remember the theme also determines what wines will be poured. You
can name a theme like "The Great Italians", "The Great
Whites of California", or whatever fits your mood. I would
suggest being very creative, the possibilities are endless. If you
tell your local wine merchant your theme, they can be a great source
of help with wine and theme matching. Also, at a minimum make sure
you have 4 to 6 different wine types to taste.
Have you heard the
saying "First the wine, then your menu"? If you had a theme
for your party and your wines followed that theme, you may want to
carry it through with whatever food you serve. For example if you are
tasting Italian Reds why not serve some Italian munchies to match.
While you do need
to provide foods that complement the wines provided, the food should
not the backbone of the party. Focus on the d´oeuvres such as:
cheese, fruit, unsalted crackers, bread or other munchies you may
have prepared for the evening. Don not forget to have lots of bottled
room temperature water and optional spit buckets available.
When all the
tasting is done, you may want to have plenty of coffee and desserts.
This is also a great time to break out one of your favorite dessert wines.
To experience the
full pleasure of the wine, it is important that you serve them at the
correct temperature. Below are the basic temperature guidelines:
Champagne and Sparkling Wines
Dry Young Wines
Aged and Pink Wines
important factors to consider when pouring the wine at a Wine Tasting Party.
the glasses only one-third full. This will prevent anyone from
swirling the wine on your tablecloth or carpeting.
to serve about eight to twelve samples from each 750 ml bottle.
3.. As a
rule, serve white wines before red wines and dry wines before sweet.
wines are served as you would serve a rose, in-between the white and
serving order is more common sense than etiquette.
wines have a tendency to over power the taste buds giving a sensation
of bitterness to the dry wines.
The first step in
the tasting process is to examine the wine and take note of the
color, clarity, and transparency of the wine. Young wines are
typically very clear. Older blends may be expected to have a little
sediment. There is a lot to this and it takes a bit of experience to
understand which hues are right for each type.
The second step is
in the pleasure of smelling the wine. Swirl the wine around in the
glass which awakens its aromas or bouquets. It is important to take a
good sniff of the bouquet and try to detect unique fragrances. If are
new at this, don´t fret, you will get better over time.
Now the fun part
of actually tasting the wine. Take a sip and roll the wine over your
tongue. Different parts of the tongue will register different tastes
so be sure to roll the wine around in your mouth. Try to focus on the
characteristics of the wine, such as body, sweetness, tartness,
bitterness, and fruitiness. You should also take notice the
subtleties of the wine´s aftertaste.
About The Author
is a Designer, Fashion Artist, Wine Enthusiast, and the creator of
"Zany Wearables" and two websites: www.ZanyGiftware.com and www.WineDefinitions.com