Ah, wine tasting, the nectar of the gods. It's an art, a science, and a pleasure all rolled into one. As Hemingway once said, "Wine is one of the most civilized things in the world and one of the most natural things of the world that has been brought to the greatest perfection, and it offers a greater range for enjoyment and appreciation than, possibly, any other purely sensory thing." And I couldn't agree more. In this blog post, we'll take a look at the 5 S's of wine tasting - a method for fully experiencing and appreciating the complexity of a fine wine.
The first S is for See. Take a look at the wine, hold it up to the light, and observe its color, clarity, and viscosity. Is it deep red or pale pink? Is it clear or cloudy? The appearance of a wine can reveal its age, grape variety, and even the winemaking methods used. A young red wine will be a bright purple color, while an older wine will have a more brick red hue.
The second S is for Swirl. Give the wine a good swirl in the glass, this will release the aromas and allow you to fully experience the bouquet. The aroma of a wine can reveal a lot about its flavor profile and the winemaking techniques used. Take a good sniff, and note any distinct scents, such as berries, oak, or vanilla.
The third S is for Sip. Take a small sip of the wine and let it roll around your mouth before swallowing. Pay attention to the taste and any flavors that stand out. Note the wine's acidity, tannins, and sweetness. The taste of a wine can reveal its body, complexity, and even its origin.
The fourth S is for Savor. Once you've taken a sip, savor the aftertaste, or the finish. How long does the taste linger after you've swallowed? Is it smooth or harsh? The finish of a wine can give you an indication of its quality and aging potential. A long and smooth finish is a sign of a high-quality wine.
The last S is for Spit. Yes, you read that right. Spitting the wine out after tasting it is a common practice among professional tasters. It allows you to taste multiple wines without getting drunk, and it also allows you to fully experience the taste and aroma of the wine without the distraction of alcohol. Of course, if you prefer to swallow the wine, that's perfectly fine as well.
Now, you might be thinking, "But Hemingway, what about the sixth S, for Sip and Savor some more!" And you'd be right, my dear friend. Wine tasting is not just about the five S's, it's also about enjoying the experience and the company. So, share a bottle with friends, savor the flavors, and make memories.
Wine tasting is not about being a connoisseur, it's about enjoying the experience. And as Hemingway once said, "Wine is the most civilized thing in the world." So, embrace the art and science of wine tasting, and let it elevate your senses and your spirit.
In conclusion, the 5 S's of wine tasting are a simple and effective way to fully experience and appreciate the complexity of a fine wine. From seeing the color and clarity, to swirling and releasing the aroma, to sipping and savoring the taste, these steps will help you fully appreciate the art of winemaking and the pleasure of a well-crafted wine. Remember to enjoy the experience, share a bottle with friends and make memories.