My friend is off on a wine tour. While for many the prospect would conjure feelings of excitement or joy, for someone in their 20’s who still mixes goon with orange juice, it can be quite scary and intimidating. I know for anyone who is just getting into wine, the swishing and the sniffing and the seemingly random adjectives and food associations can be hard to get a grip on. So I’ve come up with a cheat sheet.
Follow this, and you’ll be able to fool anyone into thinking you’re a wine
The Shiraz & Shenanigans guide to speaking wine
What you’re thinking – what you say.
Eeny, meeny, miny, moe. – “May I please speak with the sommelier?”
Déjà vu of putting charcoal in my mouth as a kid.- “Very prominent tannins.”
OMG NEED WATER ASAP. – “It’s over-driven by chewy tannins.”
That almost made my mouth water, like eating lemon. – “It’s quite acidic.”
FIRE BALL do do do do do do do do do do do do- “I think the winemaker may have overdone the alcohol, it’s overtaking the other characteristics.”
Ready? LICK, SIP, SUCK! – “I believe the winemaker may have overdone the alcohol, and the acidic length in the back of the pallet is overpowering.”
Oh that’s nice. I’m tasting… oh wait don’t speak up yet I’m kind of tasting something else… crap there’s so much going on I’m freaking out. – “I’m really enjoying the complexity.”
It kind of has a creamy texture… Is that weird to say? Seems weird, it’s wine not a milkshake. I’ll keep that to myself.- “I’m noticing some brilliant buttery characteristics” – for bonus points – “How long has it spent in oak?”
Did I just lick a wet dog? Doesn’t seem right but everyone was going ape-shit about the charcoal wine before so who knows? – “Was this under cork? I believe it may have been tainted.”
You know that old spice commercial with the sexy man on a horse? This tastes like all him bottled up. – “An opulent wine – rich, bold and smooth with impressive length.”
Seriously though. Don’t let anyone intimidate you into using fancy words which don’t make sense to you or convincing you you like something you don’t. The brilliant thing about wine is that it’s so personal and everyone can perceive it differently. Use whatever words come to mind to describe what you’re tasting and just enjoy the experience!