A glass of
crisp refreshing wine --- this exquisite drink evokes profound feelings and
utmost pleasure especially when relished with loved ones. Wine, savored with
openness and sensitivity, can turn the simplest occasions into a grand
celebration of life.
The best way to
appreciate wine is to involve the senses. Consider the following "test".
The wine's color, clarity and
reflection of light reveal aspects of its character and quality. These can be
vividly examined by holding up your glass of wine
against a background like a piece of paper or tablecloth. To determine
its body or alcohol content, swirl your glass gracefully until the wine dances
near the brim. See how long it takes to flow down the side of the glass.
Full-bodied wines trickle in sheet, then stream into droplets called "legs".
On the other hand, medium-bodied wines descend into smaller legs while light-bodied
drinks flow quickly and evenly.
A wine's smell is usually called the
"nose". Swirl the wine again and sniff the wine for about 5 to 10
seconds. Do you sense a whiff of fresh grapes? This is described as aroma, which
is most noticeable in young wines. The bouquet on the other hand, denotes more
complex scents that remind you of fruits, flowers, spices or herbs.
Now comes the actual tasting. Take a decent sip of the wine, whirl it
around your mouth. Note any hints of sweetness, bitterness or acidity? Inhale
some air then swallow. By doing this, you utilize your nasal passages to detect
more flavors and character from the wine.
Take another sip, let it linger in your mouth for a while and focus now
on the wine's touch. How does it feel in your mouth? Light-bodied wines are
those with thin and slightly watery texture. Medium-bodied wines have a fuller
touch but not too heavy in texture while full-bodied wines impart a rich and
mouth-coating feel. A wine with a clean finish leaves a nice, satisfying
aftertaste without unpleasant tastes such as excessive bitterness, sweetness or
An outstanding wine will have all above mentioned qualities in
balance. In giving your conclusion, don't be afraid to voice out what you have
experienced. The bottom line is --- a good wine is a wine that pleases you. So
relax and enjoy.