Wine is a food. We enjoy it with meals, or with company. It does not have to be expensive to be enjoyable or even to want to talk about it. The tasting ritual exists because wine is complicated, and it helps to take it one step at a time. Wine appeals to everyone, and there is no reason it should be for a privileged few. In most of the rest of the world, it is just another food item on the table.


Step 1 - Look at the wine, judge its appearance. What color is it? How opaque is it?

第一步: 看酒色,判断葡萄酒的色泽,什么颜色?透明度如何?

Step 2 - Swirl the wine and then smell it. Do it twice, the first time inhale from just outside the glass, slowly and long. The second time inhale sharply from inside the glass. This will help you to smell both the aromas that escape the glass and those that stay inside. Don''t worry yet about what you smell, just how strong the smell is. This is the degree of fruit. If the wine burns your nose hairs it is "hot" and this means it has a lot of alcohol. This is usually a sign of quality in wine, if it is not too overwhelming. You also want to notice and comment on any strange or bad smells the wine may have.



Tip: Swirling a wine glass takes practice. As you are learning, the best way to do it is to leave the wine glass on the table, place two fingers on either side of the stem, and make small circles with the base. Start slowly, and as you gain confidence swirl more vigorously. Learning to keep the wine in the glass and off your clothes is the goal. Practice with water, to minimize stains.


Step 3 - You finally get to taste the wine. Place a small amount of wine in your mouth, and perform the famous wine tasting slurp. This will increase the amount of aromas that reach your nose, through your mouth, increasing the intensity of the flavors. The flavor of the wine is defined by the balance of the 3 tastes: fruit, acid and tannin. It is further defined by the specific type of fruit you experienced, usually this is first noticeable in the smell, and often, but not always, carries through to the flavor.

第三步: 终于可以品尝葡萄酒了。


Tip: The slurping technique is another one that takes practice but is very important. Place a small amount of water or wine in your mouth. Do not swallow. Place your lower lip between your teeth, and raise your upper lip. You can now draw air in through your teeth and over the wine. Practice until you can do it easily, and without so much force that you choke. Beware of dribbling.


Step 4 - Look for any tastes that follow swallowing (or spitting) the wine. Are the flavors pleasant? Is there any bitterness? We are looking for actual bitterness here as opposed to the rough flavors of the tannin, and it is somewhat rare. Drinking coffee and other bitter drinks tends to dull one''s palate for bitterness, so not everyone can catch it when it is there. If you do notice it, make a comment about it, because it is a sign that the wine may not age well. After the flavor and even the aftertaste have faded, can you still taste a sense of the wine? If so, this is the linger, and how long it lasts is one of the most important indications of quality in a wine.



Step 5 - Pronounce your judgment upon the wine. Did you like it or not? If you are up to it, say why. If you have tasted enough wines to compare this one to others of its class, do so, how typical is it? Finally, consider everything you have said and experienced about the wine, and if you know how much it cost, decide if the wine is a value or not. A wine that cost many hundreds of dollars should surprise no one with its quality, but a memorable wine that is affordable is a find, and you want to make sure to remember it.

第五步: 说出您对这葡萄酒的判断。