Tag Archives: Wine Tasting

Summer Wine List

friends drinking wine

Ah, sweet memories of summer. You and your significant other drinking wine slushies on the back porch watching the sun go down. You and your significant other drinking pineapple moscato sangria in bed watching the sun come up. You and your significant other drinking rose spritzers on the beach watching the sun go down again. Summer just wouldn’t be summer without wine. So, whether you’re barbecuing, throwing a little get-together, or just sipping for enjoyment, here are some of the wines you need to have on your summer wine list.

Rosés For Summer
When most people think of summer wines, rosés inevitably come up first. However, most wine aficionados would agree that any time can be a good time for any wine, and most who have had rosés in the winter would agree. As long as you pair the wine with a complementary dish, the weather kind of fades into the background. In fact, according to Allie Poindexter from Henrietta Red in Nashville, “During the summer months when there is a wider array of produce available, our menu gets lighter, with heavier items replaced by simple and seasonal offerings that pair will with subtler wines.'” Below are a few favorites that Poindexter says are, “all perfect for sipping on hot summer nights;” and she’s not necessarily limiting her selection to rosés:

Corvezzo Terre si Marca Prosecco, Veneto, Italy
Pondexter point sour that this prosecco, naturally fermented and made from organic grapes, may be a little different from what you expect from the typical sparking. Poindexter says its,”subtle effervescence and floral, funky quality…makes it the perfect pairing for cheese and charcuterie.”

Friends' get-together with wine

Christoph Hock Kalkspitz Pet Nat, Kamptal, Austria
Pet-nats are made using a traditional method of producing sparkling wine in which the wine is bottled without additives before the primary fermentation is finished. The result is an unfiltered naturally carbonated wine with a taste comparable to apple cider.

Pouillon And Fils Premier Cru Brut Rose, Champagne, France
This rose and sparkling wine combo is unique in that the Pouillon family grows their own organically farmed grapes; a process not normally used in the region. The result is a pleasurably drinkable wine perfect for summer nights.

Quinta do Montalto Medieval de Ourem Rose, Lisbon Portugal
Poindexter notes that, while the dark ruby color of this wine may not be typical of most roses, drinking the wine will clarify it as pure rose. “It drinks like a rose with lots of red berry fruit and a soaring acidity,” she says, “It has an interesting woodsy character, the result of being aged in chestnut barrels.

Mica Vinho Verde, Minho, Portugal
Made from biodynamic, organic grapes, Poindexter described this vinho verde as, “super light and drinkable, ” adding that it has a “pronounced mineralogy and a low ABV of 10 percent.” and is a “fantastic pairing for oysters and crudos.”

wine glasses clinking

Arndorfer Kamptal Vorgeschmack White, Niederosterreich, Austria
Poindexter informs, “Vorgeshmack means appetizer in German, and like an appetizer this wine is meant to be an introduction into the Arndorfer family vineyards.” Apparently, it’s an enticing one. The chef says, “Reisling lands fruitiness and dynamism while Gruner Veltliner brings florals and spice.”

What are you drinking this summer? Cocktails? Or are you more of a strict wine purist? Let us know!

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Your Holiday Wine Tasting Party Plan

Enjoying a holiday wine tasting party
You finally landed your first real world job, and you want to throw a party and invite some of your new coworkers and you’re concerned about making a good impression, Alcohol needs to be involved, but you want to keep it classy. No keg parties here. Something more organized, more civilized, inviting quiet conversation. How about a wine tasting party? Perfect! You can keep it intimate, maybe six to twelve people, some elegant decorations, something with a soft subtle glow, maybe some winter garlands and some candlelight shining on the wine glasses. You can see it now….

Themed Party
Creating a theme for the party is a good idea. it will help direct the party conversation and will also serve as a guide line when you are stocking up. Some theme ideas include;

  • Variety: Invite your guest to sample wines from different regions. You can have them compare a Pinot Noir from New Zealand to one from California and another from Burgundy.
  • Blind Tasting: This is a sure way to guarantee entertainment. Pour wines into decanters labeled with a number or wrap bottle in foil to hide their identities and see if your guests can guess what they are.
  • Style: Select wines with a similar style. Your party can feature an array of crisp whites or bold reds for a taste comparison.
  • Region: Choose a region and offer wines which are unique to the area to let your guest see how location can effect the taste and body of wine.
  • Vintage: Find a few different vintages of the same wine. This may be a pricier and more ambitious theme to fulfill, but it may provide some enlightenment for novice wine tasters.

Keep the Party Small and Purchase in Accordance
Six to twelve is a good number of guests to have at your party. It will encourage conversation and keep the wine pouring more manageable. Also, by keeping the headcount low, you will avoid the need to provide duplicates of the wines to ensure everyone gets some. A good guideline for determining how much wine yo want to buy is about half a bottle to a bottle per guest, unless you invite the office lush, or if you are the office lush. A bottle of wine is about 24 ounces which yields 12 two-ounce tastes per bottle, but be prepared for guests wanting to re-taste. Start small, by pouring short tastes for your guests and provide spit buckets for those who may not want to overdo it.

Wine selections
Glasses and Background. One glass per person is perfectly acceptable, although two glasses are better for taste comparisons. While the more creative among us may be inspired to decorate elaborately, color is an important consideration in wine tasting, so clear glassware, optimal lighting and a white background will work best.

Palate Cleansers. Set out a simple bread plate or water crackers for palate cleansing between pours and make sure to have plenty of water on hand.
Writing Materials. For some added polish, set out some pens and papers for tasking wine notes. You may even consider providing a printed grid with the names of the wines and a scoring scale.

How did it go? We want to hear how your event went? Was it a hit? What would you suggest for a successful wine party. Let us know!

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How to Dress for a Wine Tasting – Vine Vera Reviews

A couple participating in a wine tastingGetting the outfit right is just as important as where you’re going; if you don’t look right, you don’t feel right, and then the whole day is a waste. Of course, certain events require certain types of outfit, and in the case of heading for a day’s wine tasting, if you’ve never been before, how do you know what you should be adorning yourself with?

Luckily, help is at hand!

It obviously depends on where you’re heading, but generally wineries tend to be out in the country. This fact doesn’t mean you have to wear tweed and be terribly well behaved, but it does mean you need to dress for comfortable sophistication, rather than six inch stiletto heels – getting stuck in the grass is not an attractive look.

Think comfort, but think style
Timeless and classic is the direction you need to be going in, so think capri pants and wedges, floral dresses and ballet flats, denim jackets, and blazers. One rule however? Avoid white and cream. If you’re sipping red wine there is bound to be a spillage of some sort, basically because it’s Murphy’s law, and you don’t want to be walking around for the rest of the day with everyone thinking you’re half-drunk already.

If you’re outdoors in the countryside, remember that it can get a little chilly as the afternoon wears on, or indeed early in the morning, so maybe a pashmina to wrap around your shoulders or around your neck to ward off the chill maybe a good idea. Be sure to color co-ordinate with your outfit and you’ll look like you just walked off a catwalk.

Keep accessories to a minimum
If you must wear jewelry, keep it classic and minimal. Too much bling is a little too nightclub for a day out wine tasting, so remember the saying that less is more.

The same can be said for make up. Your outfit, hair, and make up is going to have to last for a long day, and if it’s warm you don’t want slippages, and indeed, you also don’t want to be leaving your lipstick behind little by little every time you take a sip. Less is more is the mantra you need here too.

It’s all about how you feel
Despite what you might think on first impression, a day out wine tasting isn’t a stuffy affair, it’s actually quite a laid-back day, and the vibe around the winery will ooze that from the moment you arrive. Keep your outfit equally as chilled-out, but remember to wear something that you are comfortable in, which will last you all day, and that you feel good about yourself in, leaving you free to enjoy your day.

It’s true what they say, if you feel good on the inside, it shows on the outside!

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