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How to Taste a Wine

It's not an issue of snobbery. To best appreciate a wine, it should be properly sniffed and sipped. No gulping or chug-a-lugging when it comes to wine tasting, it's an art and it makes use of all our senses. See the colors, taste the flavors, feel the texture, smell the bouquet, hear that cork as it pops.

Pour Choose a large goblet then pour in a small amount of wine.
Swirl Gently swirl the wine by holding the base of the stem and slowly rotating in a clockwise motion. Be patient, it takes a while to master the art of swirling without spilling.
Hold Be careful not touch the bowl of the goblet. Keep your fingers low - on the stem and on the base. This is done to avoid altering the temperature of the wine and changing its taste.
Look Observe the wine as it rolls along and down the sides of the glass. Appreciate the designs.
Admire Hold the goblet up to the light. Note the shades of color as they refract through the glass. The wine should appear bold and bright, never dull or cloudy.
Swirl Again.
Inhale Gently, get close enough to the rim of the goblet so that you can sense the deep fragrances of the wine. Try to remember those aromas as you later drink the wine and compare it to other tastes.
Sip You're ready. Take a very, very small sip and leave it on your tongue. As it sits on you tongue - inhale, bringing more air into your mouth as the drop of wine is cupped in your tongue, filling your mouth with the taste.
Sip If you like your first taste, imagine how delightful the next sip will be. Sip again.

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Micah Halpern is the wine reviewer. See other articles and reviews by Micah Halpern.
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