Monday, July 7, 2014

Tasting Room Etiquette

Wine tasting sessions are often the highlight of visits to Australia’s wine growing regions, such as Margaret River. While such events might sound like nothing more than an excuse to get inebriated on high quality wine, there is a certain etiquette that is followed in the wine tasting room, as is with most other aspects of high culture.
First, there is the manner of dress, which should be appropriate for such a sophisticated outing. Participants should dress in comfortable, casually, yet elegant clothing respectful of the winery’s standing. Strong perfume should be avoided. Strong scents overwhelm the aromas in the wine and can ruin the experience for everyone involved.
Second, there is the mode of conduct. Despite alcohol being the theme of the evening, wine tasting events are generally meant to be more relaxed and conversational in nature. Loud banter and rowdiness are atonal with the intended atmosphere and should be avoided.
Third, there is the observance of proper wine tasting technique, which, as the name suggests, should be more about tasting than consuming. The wine is first aerated by swirling it in the glass so that it gives off its bouquet of aromas. It is customary to inhale deeply before taking a sip, and thereafter, to swirl the wine in your mouth to coat all surfaces of the mouth.
Finally, there is the exercise of moderation. The goal is not to get inebriated, and participants are expected to take advantage of the provided spittoons for precisely this purpose.

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