A new wine tasting class

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A new wine tasting class

Postby Gary Bobier » Thu Dec 20, 2012 4:04 pm

I thank all of you in advance for your answers.

I have been conducting a blind tasting with a light dinner after the tasting for about 7 years. I have been using the CMS blind tasting grid. I want to change the format.

My idea is to work more closely with the basic componets of all wine starting with the tactile part. Starting with sugar, we will work with recognition threshold and perception threshold to start so each taster knows their genitic abilities to taste. I will follow some of the tutorials in The University Wine Course by Marian Baldy as a guide and keep the testing wines on the table so that the group can refer back to them during the comparison portion of the taste.

We will do the testing part and then enjoy tasting. There will be 2-3 wines and the group will use a compairison grid that I have made.

I will have other tastings with focus on Bitter, Tannin, Acid and then work on the olfactory and serving temperature componets.

I welcome any all all ideas. I have no professionals in the group. Just folks that enjoy wine and want to learn a bit more about it.
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Re: A new wine tasting class

Postby Ian Sutton » Thu Dec 20, 2012 6:53 pm

If the group all like this technical approach, then definitely go for it - thinking of it in the same way that great painters/artists in centuries past were often very technically skilled. Whilst such a technical approach would be rare, what's most important is agreeing as a group on what you want. There are some good examples in Michael Schusters Essential Winetasting book, including 'reference tastings' of lemon for acidity etc. plus good comparitive tastings. However I sense this is more mainstream than you're looking for.

Thinking out of the box, have you thought about engaging someone involved in developing perfumes. It might be interesting/enlightening to see how they approach their subject.

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Re: A new wine tasting class

Postby Oliver McCrum » Thu Dec 20, 2012 10:16 pm

I did a seminar for the general public a few months ago doing this, tasting non-wine examples of the structural components of wine; it was very well received. I think it's tremendously useful.
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Re: A new wine tasting class

Postby Gary Bobier » Fri Dec 21, 2012 3:29 pm

Thanks for the input. I do plan to go back to the blind taste grid after the group has a better understanding of the basic structure of wine. We might revisit the basics as needed. We will have a meeting on the first taste of the new year to talk about the possible changes.
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Re: A new wine tasting class

Postby Hoke » Sat Dec 22, 2012 2:16 pm

The Society of Wine Educators offers a lab kit of samples of components with directions enabling you to build your own over-threshold examples for analysis.

This kit is designed to showcase different components that can show as flaws or faults, but can also be used to display relative amounts bu using them in a base wines.

The SWE has also offered (but I don't know if they are still available) a kit of perfume-chemist-designed scents associated with wine. I've used this approach quite a bit to good effect, with the understanding there are built-in limitations: perfumes are sufficiently different from essences which are sufficiently different from wines, that these things are only correlative to a degree. But still, it can be an effective learning device, ad often an effective teaching device to key the 'students' learn by comparing things for themselves (with judicious guidance,)
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Re: A new wine tasting class

Postby JC (NC) » Wed Dec 26, 2012 4:29 pm

I like Hoke's suggestion. One of the early wine tasting seminars I attended was conducted by a representative from Robert Mondavi Winery at Triangle Wine Experience. We compared the standard Robert Mondavi Fume Blanc with samples doctored with excessive wood, acid, sweetness, etc. The overly acidic one reminded me of dissolving an aspirin tablet in a spoon and then swallowing it. The tannic one reminded me of chewing on a matchstick (someone else said a charred matchstick.) It helped me in an early stage of taking wines seriously.
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