For the uninitiated, wine talk can be tough. It is often the equivalent to the trepidations of learning a second, slightly confusing language. Sure, we all love to sip on Cabernet Sauvignons and Merlot, but when asked about the differences in varietals, notes, or aromas, chances are we might find ourselves a little tongue-tied. Most people just want to drink the good stuff without having to learn an extensive vocabulary beyond the simple “red” or “white.” But as difficult as it might seem, you, too, can develop a refined palate and detect even the most subtle nuances while tasting wine. All it takes is some practice.
Some people are born with sensitive taste buds, which means they experience flavors with a much higher intensity than the rest of us. But there are quite a few easy ways in which you can improve your wine tasting skills, and with time, you will be surprised by just how different a wine can taste with a more developed palate. Here are a few tips that will help you train your palate:
1. Learn about the wine-making process
If you want to excel as a wine taster, you need to familiarize yourself with the world of wines, including the process of making wine. In fact, this is a great way to learn how to differentiate between wines as most of the variation is a result of the vinification. The changes in the steps like fermentation and clarification often lead to the creation of a wide range of wines with different characteristics.
2. Train your nose
When it comes to food, some people are more sensitive to flavors, even the most subtle ones, while others cannot make any difference. The same holds true for wine as well, but the good news is that you can make yourself more sensitive with experience. And that starts with training your nose. When you begin to identify aromas, you will become more acquainted with different varietals. For instance, a Sauvignon Blanc can be instantly recognized by its typical aromas, which are gooseberry, elderflower, and passion fruit, among others.
3. Practice makes perfect
You will not become an “oenophilic” genius on your first wine tasting. It takes time and it takes quite a bit of practice. Attend wine tasting tours and events. The more you taste, the more you learn. And when at tastings, don’t be reluctant to ask questions. You can talk to industry experts, fellow wine tasters, sommeliers, and so on. Once you are able to create the complete profile of a wine, you can then use its distinct characteristics to identify it every time you take a sip.
Whether you want to develop or polish your wine tasting skills, joining a wine club may be just what you need. At Vinous Reverie, we have some of the best monthly wine clubs that offer numerous exciting perks to its members, including a carefully curated selection of gems that you can pick up in-store or get delivered to your home or office.