Wine tasting is a fun and enjoyable activity, but it’s important to follow proper etiquette to make the most of the experience. Here are the ’10 Don’ts of Wine Tasting’ and how to be a respectful and knowledgeable taster:
1. Don’t wear strong perfumes or colognes.
The scent of perfume or cologne can interfere with your ability to smell and taste the wine, so it’s best to avoid wearing them when wine tasting.
2. Don’t drink too much.
On many of our wine tours, we visit 3 or more wineries daily, plus enjoy wine-paired meals. It’s important to pace yourself and remember that you are there to taste the wine and enjoy. You will receive plenty of wine, and in fact, it’s okay to spit, which brings us to #3.
3. Don’t feel obligated to drink.
If you feel like it’s too early in the morning to consume wine or you just reached your limit, it is perfectly OK to spit in a designated spittoon. In fact, you’ll probably look like a professional, as many wine media and writers spit during all tastings. You might even find you noticed new flavors using this technique.
4. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
If you have questions about the wine or the winemaking process, don’t hesitate to ask the staff. They will be happy to help you learn more about the wine you are tasting. This is why they are there.
5. Don’t drink on an empty stomach.
It’s a good idea to eat something before wine tasting to help absorb the alcohol and prevent getting drunk too quickly. Snacking on crackers or cheese can also help cleanse your palate between tastings. On our tours, your guide will always have snacks available to you throughout the day, or you can easily purchase something if you need a bite.
6. Don’t be afraid to try something new.
While it’s okay to have your favorite types of wine, it’s also important to be open to trying new things. You never know, you may discover a new favorite wine by stepping outside of your comfort zone!
7. Don’t be overly critical.
While it’s okay to have your own opinions about the wine, it’s important to remember that wine is a subjective experience and what you may not like, someone else may enjoy. While it’s okay not to like a certain bottle of wine, please respect other people’s tastes and avoid being overly critical or judgmental.
8. Don’t be afraid to ask for less wine.
We usually don’t have any issues with providing enough wine, in fact, you might find there is often too much in your glass, and you feel obligated to drink it. A hand over your glass while staff come around to pour or a quiet “just a little, please” will indicate you don’t want your glass filled.
9. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
If you are feeling overwhelmed or unsure about what to do during a wine tasting, don’t be afraid to ask the staff or your guide for help. They will be happy to assist you and provide recommendations judgment free!
10. Don’t forget to have fun!
Most important, wine tasting is supposed to be enjoyable, so don’t take it too seriously. Relax, have a good time, and savor the experience.
By following these simple ’10 Don’ts of Wine Tasting’ guidelines, you can ensure that your wine-tasting experience is enjoyable and educational. Happy sipping!
>> Did You Know? All of our tours are hosted by guides who are savvy in all things wine and tasting. Don’t hesitate to join us to learn as you go in an outstanding wine destination such as Sonoma, Spain, or South Africa.