Wines are an exotic and palatable drink to sip and savor while in the comfort of one´s own home or when out at a snazzy party with friends or coworkers. The popularity of wine among people from many different countries around the world is no secret and perhaps its many prominent qualities can be found in the fact that this exquisite drink comes in a wide array of mouthwatering flavors that burst in your mouth. Each wine has various actors that make it unique when compared and set against other types of wines. These wines vary in flavor due to many things such as age, region, type of grape, how it is bottled and stored, method of wine production and more. When all these factors interplay and combine with one another, various drinks with a large range of flavors are made that can suit everybody´s taste and desires. It is wise though that with all the recognition and popularity that wine has, one should not be fooled. Wine can truly be grandeur when various factors are paired correctly, but when not done correctly can produce mediocre or average tasting wines. Nothing too spectacular to boast about. That is why it is imperative that when one plans to buy the best wines or choose the best wines for food or comfort, a person needs to have a good grasp of how to rate a wine correctly. Rating wines can help in knowing what type of wines go good with what and it helps you to understand what to look out for when finding that perfect one that suits your own taste buds and preferences. This article will give you the rundown on how to properly sample a wine so that you are able to rate and organize your wine preferences! It´s probably good to know that before you rate any wine, you need to know how to sample wine the correct way!
How to Sample Wine
The first thing one should know about how to properly sample and taste a wine is that wine (unlike other drinks) should not be sampled by mere tasting. There are so many qualities in wine that set it apart from other drinks, that merely tasting it does not do the wine justice. To fully understand the entirety of the wine and all the components that make the wine up. First begin by pouring your bottle of wine into a wine glass about a quarter full. When holding a wine glass, never hold it by the bulb. You must always hold the wine glass by the stem because heat builds between the bulb of the glass and your fingers and this can actually distort the actual flavor and taste of the wine. Wine needs a good minute or two to be exposed to the air before you start drinking, so take your time and examine the wine. It is also best to try to sniff your wine as it pours from the bottle and compare this fragrance to the fragrance you receive after you have given it a good twirl. This is an excellent way to examine if your wine has been spoiled or gone rotten. Keep an eye out for any vinegar, musty, nail polish, yeast, or burn smell that accompanies the wine. These are signs that there must be some flaw in the wine that may be chemical or biological and it is a sign that you should not drink it (unless you like torturing yourself). To understand the color of your wine try pinning it against a white background and slowly tilt yourself. Make note of the color that makes up the edge of the wine and the color that makes up the center of the wine. Try to examine the color and clarity of the wine. Some tips to point out when doing this is know that white wine can get darker as it ages, but it should never be brown (that is a major red flag), red wines can get a little brown and can sometimes have a little bit of sediment at the bottom, and all types of wine should never be murky or cloudy. Make sure to swirl your wine before tasting. This is essential for gaging the flavors of the wine as swirling allows the oxygen to seep more into the wine and send the aroma out. It also helps to increase the overall surface area. It is crucial to know that great wine that smells good will always taste good. If you notice the wine does not produce an aromatic smell than most likely you are not going to enjoy the actual taste of the wine. If you can´t get a good idea of what the wine smells like than most likely you need to swirl the glass more to get the aromas of the drink to open up. When smelling keep an eye out for fruity, herbal, floral, earthy, spicy, or subtle scents. Each scent gives a general idea of the flavors you will expect to experience. Next comes the actual tasting. Now for this part of the process do not simply just swallow the wine as soon as it reaches your mouth. That will not give you any sort of great understanding of the actual flavors of wine and whether you like them or not. Instead use a process known as expectorating, where you roll the wine around so you can figure out and understand the sort of flavors you taste. Get an idea of the weight or texture of the wine and whether you enjoy that feel and flavor or not. Aspirating your wine is another thing you should do. Once you have done the first taste, purse your lips like you are going to whistle and draw air into your mouth to exhale out the nose. The wine from your taste buds mix in with the air that you exhaled through the nose, to help gage any new aromas that you didn´t originally smell before you tasted the wine. Try slowly (and quietly) to slurp the wine. Detect any new flavors that didn’t come about during the first taste.
After You´ve Sampled the Wine
Now search for balance. Good wine needs a balance of various flavors. One wine cannot simply have just one dominating flavor that aggressively attacks your taste buds. Nice wine should have an equal balance of various flavors that hit upon your taste buds all at once. Make sure to also assess the aftertaste of your wine. Sometimes wine can initially leave you with a good taste, but then completely hit you with a very unpleasant taste after about 60 seconds or so. This is a sign of bad quality wine. As soon as you have performed these tests and actions, it is best to immediately write down your thoughts about the wine. Throw in some wine terminology to help with making the understanding of the wine more concise and clear. Write about aromas, flavor, aftertaste, body, texture, weight, and whether you truly liked it or not.
How to Rate Your Wine
Now you have come to the grand finale. You have tasted and analyzed the wine and now you must calculate your results to see the overall rating and preference that you have for this wine. Now there is no set way of actually rating a wine. Rating a wine is actually subjective and can be different for every person depending on the distinctive qualities of a wine that they choose to focus on and deem important in a wine. That is why rating a wine depends on first creating your own scale. Think of categories or qualities of wine that you deem important enough to consider when you think about which wines are worth it and which wines are not. Perhaps it is the wine´s ability to pair with food, its body, texture, color, aroma, aftertaste, flavor, etc. When it comes to wine testing to decide on wines to buy for your own preferences, you are the creator of your own wine scale and you get to decide which qualities are the most important to you. For every category, give it a max number that it can score out of (and for easier calculator try to rate each category out of the same number. Here is an example of a system you could use. I´m going to use an overall rating out of 100. Let´s say I have 5 categories to think about- flavor, aroma, texture, aftertaste, and food pairing. For every category, I will give it a rating out of 10. Then I will add up the ratings from every category together and then multiply that number by
2. This will give me a number that should be under 100. Then assign the number a letter grade.
Letter Grade Scale
(A+) – 100
(A) – 94 – 99
(A-) – 93 –90
(B+) – 89 – 87
(B) – 86 – 84
(B) – 83 – 80
(C+) – 79 – 77
( C ) – 76 – 74
(C -) – 73-70
(D+) – 69 – 67
(D) – 66 – 64
(D -) – 63 – 60
(F) – 0 – 59
For this scale think of any A as being outstanding. When it comes to any type of B, place that in the very good category. A C should be placed in the good category. A D should be placed in the mediocre category. Lastly an F should definitely be without a doubt a failure and get rid of it category. Of course depending on the number of categories you give for your scale, the calculations will be different, but this scale is just an example of one way you can rate your wine.
You´ve Rated, Now Make the Decision
Now that you have rated your wine. It is time for the decision. Does the wine´s rating make the wine deserving of many more purchases. Or does the rating display that you have completely wasted your money and time? Make the decision on whether you will definitely splurge with no regrets on the wine. If that is the case than you have found yourself an exquisite wine, to wine, dine, and relax with.
Some Detailed Flavors to Think About
When thinking about and assessing the taste of your wine (and while you are writing your overall reflection), think of some distinctive flavor adjectives you can use to explain the flavors of wine in more detail and depth, so you have a better recall of the taste of the wine when it comes to rating time.
These are just the few of many distinctive flavors that you can pick up when tasting and rating wine. You can feel free to check out even more extensive wine vocabulary when writing out your thoughts in your reflection, so that you have a greater understanding for wine terminology and can quickly become the pro of understanding the words used in context with qualities of wine.
The Overall Idea
The idea behind sampling and rating wines is no brainer. People do it because they know that wine is a very exquisite and memorable drink to have, and having knowledge of the right kinds and types of wines makes drinking this tasteful drink an even more pleasant and enhanced experience. I mean wine has so many benefits and properties to it that drinking it in moderate amounts is proven to be very good for you. You add that in addition to the fact that it is definitely not a horrible drink to consume and you see why people love to spend lots of money on lavish vacations to get their hands on these babies and see which one works best for them. Whether you drink socially or you drink to relax wine is good for the soul, so you might as well get cracking on the best flavors and types to overall improve the experience of drinking in your health benefits.