Tag: wine tasting

Tips to bubble lovers

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If you consider yourself a lover of cava, champagne and other sparkling wines, we want to give you some ideas so that your taste for sparkling wine expands and you discover new flavors, aromas, forms and experiences that this type of wine can offer you:

1. Give an English Sparkling Wine a Chance

If you have not done it, we recommend that you do it as soon as the opportunity presents itself. The English sparkling wine has had very good reception and positive trend during recent times and can be found in different places. It is made in the same way as Champagne.

2. Attend a tasting event

If you have never been to an event of this type, treat yourself to a course or a tasting specialized in sparkling wine. You will have fun, you will love it and you will learn a lot of things about the bubbles.

3. Visit a vineyard

It is something you should see at least once at some point in life. In fact, there probably is a vineyard very close to you without you knowing it. Whether in Spain, Italy or France, get lost in some of the regions specializing in sparkling wine.

4. Get out of your comfort zone

It is very pleasing to find a good sparkling wine that makes us “click” to think that “is ours”, but we can not or should not be limited to just one sparkling wine. There are many wines of this type all over the world, why not try some of them?

5. Simply pamper yourself!

Enjoying champagne is considered a luxury and should only be enjoyed on “special occasions”. Put aside those paradigms and enjoy a delicious glass of sparkling wine whenever you feel like doing it.

 TAGS:Anna de Codorniu Blanc de Blancs Brut ReservaAnna de Codorniu Blanc de Blancs Brut Reserva

Anna de Codorniu Blanc de Blancs Brut Reserva

 

 

 TAGS:Pol Roger Brut RéservePol Roger Brut Réserve

Pol Roger Brut Réserve

China, wine tasters with world power

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Last October, the fourth edition of the annual “blind tasting” championship was organized by the French magazine La Revue du vin de France. This year’s surprise was China, whose team of wine tasters beat the representatives of the other 20 countries participating in this international award competition.

With a total of 108 points, the delegation of the Asian giant was crowned ahead of countries with a broad wine tradition like France (2nd with 102 points), United States (3rd with 100 points), Spain (10th with 76 points), Argentina (17th with 49 points) or Italy (18th with 48 points). In order to obtain these points, the participants of this blind tasting had to identify the country of origin, the grape varieties, denomination of origin and year of harvest of six red wines and six white wines from different regions of the world.

China’s victory was described as “a bomb” within the world of wine, especially for those European countries with a strong wine industry such as France, Spain and Italy. Brice Leboucq, the coach of the Chinese team attributed this victory to the high competition, giving access only to professionals of the highest level.

This is not the first time that the Asian country surprises to overcome to the world powers of the wine. In 2011, the Jia Bei Lan 2009 wine produced by Helan Qing Xue received the Bordeaux Red International Variety Trophy at the Decanter World Wine Awards. All this is a reflection of the growth and strengthening of the wine industry in China. In fact, at the moment it has the second largest surface occupied world-wide by vineyards (more than 800,000 hectares); Surpassed only by Spain.

There is no doubt that the wine industry of this Asian country is on the right track to become a world wine power; This is supported by these important international awards. However, China still faces a major challenge: getting rid of the image of being a manufacturer of massive and cheap products, something that will be very difficult within the circle of wine lovers.

 TAGS:El Molar 2015El Molar 2015

El Molar 2015

 

 

 TAGS:Viña Arana Reserva 2006Viña Arana Reserva 2006

Viña Arana Reserva 2006

5 tips on how to enjoy a hedonistic tasting

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The search for the maximum sensory pleasure is taking centre stage in the world of tourism and gastronomy. It seeks to give pleasure through food or drink, to reach a maximum sense of wellbeing. So when we talk about hedonistic tastings they are those that provide this pleasure when drinking, for example, wine.

  1. Good ambience. For a hedonistic tasting, you should be surrounded by something good and enjoyable. Either the best atmosphere, friends, relatives, people that make us feel free while we taste good wine. Everything is linked. Living situations, relaxing, in a carefree atmosphere.
  2. Enjoyment. On the contrary to professional tastings, at hedonistic ones you’re looking to have fun. You’re going to this tasting with the goal of having a good time. 
  3. Enjoy the sensory pathways. In this type of tasting, several things are important for the best experience, sight, smell, and taste. We need to condition this tasting to all of these sensory stimuli to learn to seek new flavours and aromas that will allow us later to distinguish one wine from another, and always with pure pleasure.
  4. Wines to fascinate you. It is believed, according to wine experts that hedonistic tastings bring you joy and euphoria; they’re intended to fascinate and enthral pleasure at its best.
  5. It can be practised anywhere. This type of tasting, unlike most professional ones, can be done where ever you want to – at home, in a garden, or a bar. Invite friends and/or persons who understand the subject like an oenologist or sommelier, to guide the guests and help them develop new knowledge, as well as their palate.

Wine recommendations by Uvinum

 TAGS:M. Chapoutier Bila Haut Occultum Lapidem 2014Bila-Haut Occultum Lapidem 2014

Bila-Haut Occultum Lapidem 2014: Through biodynamics Michel Chapoutier gets the best out of his wines, reminding us of images from the South of France with its warm colours and scents of Mediterranean woods. 

 

 TAGS:Pipoli Aglianico del Vulture DOC 2013Pipoli Aglianico DOC 2013

Partially matured in French barriques, the Pipoli Aglianico DOC 2013 from Basilicata spoils your palate with a bouquet of red berries, cherries and violets and hints of vanilla, liquorice, and black pepper.

Want to be a sommelier? Don’t miss these online courses!

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If you are in other countries, you want to practice English and learn to be a sommelier or maybe get more knowledge about the world of wine, we recommend some classroom and online courses, where you can become a wine connoisseur in an easy, quick and comfortable way. You can already take note!

The National wine school. They perform several Professional Certification Programs in the world of wine. Always online, the available training is varied, with sommelier certifications. For example, the Master Sommelier was born in 1969, and contains several programs with four levels of examinations.

International Sommelier Guild. It is one of the most interesting and complete, offering a specialized degree in wine selling, wine distribution, managing, etc. Just sign up and follow their guidelines.

Master Sommelier. With this Master, you will obtain specific expertise in restaurant managing, account managing of a wine brand, wine director for a retailer, restaurant or hotel.

Sommelier courses. The University of California announces a new sommelier course within the Specialized Studies Program at the UC Irvine Extension. It comes from the wine boom in this country, the region and around the world, and helps understanding how the wines are called, becoming familiar with the most famous grapes in the world, how to read a wine list with confidence and experience, understanding the labels of domestic wines, etc.

Sommelier Society of America Courses. Headquartered in New York City, this program will prepare you to get a sommelier certificate, and is performed for along 21 weeks.

Sommelier courses. The United States Sommelier Association announces a range of several days courses to get certificates, do internships, etc. with which you will discover novelties about the passion for the world of wine.

 

 TAGS:Fragolino Rosso BottegaFragolino Rosso Bottega

Fragolino Rosso Bottega is a sparkling wine with DO Veneto from the Bottega cellar. A wine sparkling rated with 3,3 points on 5 according to Uvinum’s users.

 

 

 TAGS:Castello Banfi Rosa Regale 2013Castello Banfi Rosa Regale 2013

Castello Banfi Rosa Regale 2013 is a sparkling wine of the Piedmont DO produced with brachetto from the 2013 vintage and with an alcoholic strength of 7º.

 

 

 TAGS:Leo Malbec 2011Leo Malbec 2011

Leo Malbec 2011 is a red wine San Rafael is made with malbec of 2011 and with an alcohol content of 14.70º.

What is a wine tasting?

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A wine tasting is done in order to know what are the smells, tastes and colors of wine to catalog it and to conclude their properties, both visual and taste. It is performed by professionals or oenologists, but the tastings lately are aimed at wine lovers, amateurs and people who want to know more about wine culture.

Normally, in the tasting five different wines are tried, to appreciate diversity of shades, colors, flavors, spices and more to give tasting notes and scores to each wine. The tastings are usually made in bright locations, without odors and good temperature conditions, in addition to special transparent glasses.

Stages

The stages through which you pass in a wine tasting are basically three: Visual, olfactory and gustatory. It usually begins with theoretical explanations about wines, by the oenologist or professional who imparts the tasting, to pass then to the practical part. At each stage, an explanation of its various properties is given and you can even taste the wines with various foods to measure the power of taste.

Visual stage. Usually done to see the liquid of wine, its shade and color back-lit, always with a white or daylight background. It speaks a lot about the quality and age of the wine.

Olfactory stage. Bring the glass to your nose to appreciate the different aromas which gives the wine. First we notice primary aromas and then we can move the glass to smell the secondary aromas. And if you shake it more, you can notice the tertiary aromas, which often correspond to higher quality wines.

Gustatory stage. It is perhaps the most important when tasting wine. You should retain the wine in the mouth and then spit it into a container. Then you try it again and swallow it to see what are the effects on the palate. The sensations are total, whether if you spit or you swallow the wine.

 

 TAGS:Monte Real Reserva 2007Monte Real Reserva 2007

Monte Real Reserva 2007

 

 

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Numanthia 2005

 

 

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Arabella Shiraz 2013

Color and sound, important when tasting

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In the same way that traditional theories about flavours are being overtaken by new findings showing that gustatory variety is much larger than the common belief told so far, a recent experiment provides the basis of a whole wide range of possibilities regarding the factors that influence the wine tasting.

According to the study, conducted under the Streets of Spain festival, held at London’s South Bank and organized by Campo Viejo winery, color and sound also affect our perception of the taste of wine. With almost 3,000 participants, making this experiment one of the most massive that have been held to date, the results reveal that taste perception is altered by up to 10% by the changes of color and sound in the environment of the place where the wine tasting is performed.

Professor Charles Spence, a cognitive neuroscientist and professor of experimental psychology at Oxford University, who led the experience, organized a tour, called Campo Viejo Color Lab, in which each participant was given a glass of wine according to his or her preference, in a glass of neutral black color. During the experiment, subjects were exposed to a selection of sounds and colors that, according to the findings of Spence, strongly influence taste perception of the wine.

Specifically, the enjoyment of the participants appear to increase significantly with red light and soft music; while green light and ?rough? music increases the freshness but reduce the perceived intensity of the wine. Limited exposure to red light, without music, evokes fruity notes, and green light alone brings freshness. Definitely surprising results that although may seem anecdotal, could be widely applied in the coming years in areas such as decoration and interior design of restaurants, bars and hotels.

Today we recommend two of the best selling wines for you to enjoy in any light:

 TAGS:Faustino I Gran Reserva 2001Faustino I Gran Reserva 2001

Faustino I Gran Reserva 2001

 

 

 TAGS:La Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 904 2001La Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 904 2001

La Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 904 2001

Wine blind tastings: what for?

 TAGS:I’ve been online for a while and I ‘m realizing how many articles out there explain why blind tastings are cool. I do not know how much prose on a subject that is so clear (LOL, could not help sticking a little joke). Well, I certainly do not know what do you think about it but I find it difficult to decide whether I prefer it in the dark or with the eyes wide open (well, let’s return to the subject of wine).

Wine blind tastings are the same as…

The blind tastings are so poetic, sensory and useful as:

  • Studying in a library with earplugs: yes there you concentrate, and not listening to people talk, the TV of the neighbors, etc.. The study goes further and optimize the time spent, and the results.
  • Go to one of this modern restaurants where they propose you taste your menu in complete darkness: that if you forget the price, of course, have other added benefits many, many of which are related with enjoying the experience in good company so together you make the evening memorable and sensational (do not know what’s wrong today with the obvious jokes).
  • Listen to this piece of classical music that you like at full volume in the solitude of your nap with the blind down: this sensory journey makes you feel like if you have Mozart beside you and you start to understand people like Louis XVI always followed by a chamber orchestra. At the same time music gladly brings you a welfare state of torpor which leads you to the best of dreams.

Moreover, although this intimate connection with tannins that reach in blind tastings cannot be repeated in an average wine tasting, the one of both in which you can see the glass and the wine is the one I like best.

Just because I enjoy discovering the reflexes that shows me the precious liquid while I twist the glass, just because I like the atmosphere, I enjoy watching the expectation of those who will taste, the pride of who will pour and the wine while it slides into the glass.

It may also be because sometimes blind events are a little dangerous …  Several unforgettable experiences come to mind like harmful blind dates, and I think that could be fatal to confuse a wine by another: a white wine or red wine, a young wine with a reserva, my glass to yours (upsssss). And besides, I find it quite impractical because in the absence of light how can you read the name of the wine that you like to come to the internet to buy …

 TAGS:Campo Viejo Crianza 2009Campo Viejo Crianza 2009

Campo Viejo Crianza 2009

 

 

 TAGS:M de Minuty Rosé 2012M de Minuty Rosé 2012

M de Minuty Rosé 2012

How to became a good wine taster

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For a good wine tasting (or gin tonics, so fashionable lately, or beers), the taster should possess qualities and characteristics that make it special to appreciate tastes, smells and tastes like no other.

In addition to theoretical studies, the taster must have a sensory sensitivity, so that there are many people who don?t have a long experience in taste but, however, easily learn by the power of their senses.

Moreover, the experience is always a question of degree. The taster tested and different wines or beers throughout his life in order to compare and distinguish flavours in one drink. The taster is curious, he moves the investigation. Constantly try to discover new flavours and sensations.

The taster must be guided by what he knows and what he has learned when analyzing a wine. Here personal tastes are not worth having but the important thing to analyze is what will transmit the ingredients of each wine, leaving behind most personal experiences. He has to try many wines, especially doing blind tastings because, often, the brand determines what you are tasting, both for good and for bad.

The eternal question is whether you were born taster or made taster. Professionals are a combination of both. Some studies have shown that the ability to taste a wine would be genetic, with differences in great sensitivity to bitter tastes perceived preferably by the wine professionals.

The good taster has contact with the world of wine or food he tastes. He visits wineries, makes winemakers consultation with professionals, attends trade shows and industry conferences, and is aware of the developments that are emerging in both products and trends.

Want to taste 2 great wines? Today we recommend: 

 TAGS:Mare Nostrum Vino de Aguja Rosado 2013Mare Nostrum Vino de Aguja Rosado 2013

Mare Nostrum Vino de Aguja Rosado 2013

 

 TAGS:Etchart Privado Malbec Rosé 2012Etchart Privado Malbec Rosé 2012

Etchart Privado Malbec Rosé 2012

 

 

 

How can the Port Wines be distinguished?

 TAGS:The port wine has been made since 300 years and belongs to the category of the fortified wines. The fortified wines are made by increasing their alcohol content by adding a specific quantity of brandy during the fermentation.

At first, this process was carried out in order to prepare the wine for the transfer by sea from one continent to another. Fortified, the wines could resist to humidity and temperature swings.

Now the fortified wines are multiple and it’s complicated to understand what the labels refer to. You can be confronted to different styles, that are created thanks to a difference in aging.

Some of the varieties used for red port are Latouriga, Tinta cão, Tinta barroca, Tinta Roriz or Tempranillo and French Toutiga , while for the creation of white port the Malvasia king, Malvasia thin and Codega are used.

The styles of port:

Vintage Port: This is the highest category of port wine. It is made from the finest grapes from different vineyards are bottled between the second and third year without a filter. The minimum aging time is 10 to 15 years.

Porto Crusted: These wines are hard to fine. Also called encrusted because of the sediment left in the bottom of the bottles. They are like vintage wines, but they are made from mixtures of two to three different crops. They must be decanted before drinking.

Porto LBV: The initials indicate Late bottled Vintage. Developed since the 60s, they are bottled after spending 4-6 years in wood, from what it takes its dark and powerful flavour.

Garrafeira Port: This port spends seven years in the pipe, then is aged for approximately 40 years in carboys. They are very durable and retain their qualities intact.

Tawny: It can be identified by its brown color, obtained by contact with the wood between 5 and 7 years. After the process it will spend 10, 20, 30 or 40 years bottled before release.

Porto Ruby: A classic red port wine, its taste is fruity and its color as indicated by its prestigious name : ruby.

Porto Branco, Blanco or White: One of the less popular port as it is overshadowed by the red.

The last name of wines

 - To mention that a wine has terpenes, pyrazines, norisoprenoids or volatile thiols in the musts, just to name a few, can be hard to understand by the consumer. However, if you were told that the bottle of wine you just bought is composed of a grape wine which releases in its elaboration floral aromas (terpenes) and has a strong scent of pepper (pyrazines), could relate well these references with a Cabernet Sauvignon.

However, if you were told that in your wine there are flavors of exotic fruit, rose and even applesauce (norisoprenoids), one might guess that is about to drink a Chardonnay. On the other hand, if in the liquid you perceive notes of guava, citrus peel and grapefruit (volatile thiols in the must), this consumer would identify that he is facing a Sauvignon Blanc.

The smell, taste and aroma of a wine depend then on their chemical composition; and the prevalence of either substance in each wine will determine its nature. For this reason, knowing what grape is in the wine you buy is essential in identifying which is the variety that you like best.

Beyond the process of elaboration of a wine is almost always the same, the unique expression of the grape responds to its terroir (soil, climate, insolation, care of the vine), which in each region has different nuances and becomes therefore in particular wines.

In general, white wines release citrus aromas of lemon, orange or grapefruit, and fruits such as pear, apricot, melon or gooseberry. On the other hand, the red varieties are characterized by its load of anthocyanins, a substance responsible for the color of the wine that come off when the broken flesh contacts with the skin or peel; and the presence of tannins, polyphenolic compounds associated with astringency and bitter flavor on wine, which prolong its life and provide the consumer, among other things, antioxidants. These evoke red fruits like cherry, plum, raspberry, strawberry or blackberry. Both vinifications can also offer mineral aromas, spices, grass and other, common to fermentation such as bread or yeast.

Wine is not only grapes, but its aromas and flavors are made through chemical processes to which it is subjected, such as fermentation (transformation of the sugar contained in grapes into alcohol), sometimes malolactic fermentation (conversion of malic acid, usually associated with green apple, becoming lactic acid), and aging (preservation in oak barrel or bottle). However, there are some common factors that are expressed in each varietal and remain always reflected in the final product, the bottle.