Wine tasting is something that Chris Halajian loves to engage in. It is an opportunity to experience and sample new flavors and destinations. Following the wine route through Tuscany, France, Argentina, South Africa, California, and Australia were fantastic adventures, but his favorite was to do the Southold area, visiting a truly unique wine estate. Few people know that it is easy to find a town here that serves this refined and sophisticated drink. In reality, it was one of very few candidates for most unusual wines in recent elections, and it looks as if they may just win it. This gave rise to Halajian looking at the etiquette of behavior during wine tasting events. He does not see himself as the wine tasting police, forcing people to only have events on Monday, but he does believe some traditions should be upheld.
Chris Halajian Delves into Wine Tasting Etiquette
Wine tasting events are never crowded. Bottled water will always be on hand, so people can rinse their mouths out as well. Additionally, it will stop them from getting thirsty. Food must also be provided, but it should be bland and not change the flavor of the wine. Unsalted crackers and bread are the best. There are a number of key elements to be aware of as well:
- Decanting, which some people feel is controversial. It means the wine is allowed to breathe before it is served. Some believe this type of aeration ruins the taste of the wine, others feel it is absolutely necessary. Make sure you are open and honest about your decision from the word go.
- Blind tasting, which means that guests do not know which wine is served to them. It is even recommended to use black glasses, so they cannot make out the color. Not knowing anything about the wine gives a more honest tasting experience.
- Vertical tasting means that only a single wine is tasted, but from different years, allowing tasters to choose the best vintage.
- Horizontal tasting means that you use one type of wine, but from different wineries, helping to choose the best in a certain area.
- Tasting flights means that numerous glasses of wine are placed out, with a card detailing the wine next to it. Sometimes, as many as 50 different wines can be made available as part of a tasting flight.
- Old world and new world tasting. Old world references Spain, Austria, Italy, and France. New world refers to Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, South America, and North America. Comparing the two at a tasting event is a truly unique experience.
- Wine and cheese tasting, which enables people to determine which wines and cheeses go together the best, such as Cabernet Sauvignon with Blue Cheese.
- Wine and chocolate tasting, which is similar but with a different product. White Zinfandel, for instance, goes very well with bittersweet chocolate.
- Priceless tasting means that guests do not know the price of the wine, which usually means they also don’t know where it came from.
- Price point tasting means that all wines are at the same price point, enabling testers to choose the best wine within a certain budget.
- Big 8 Tasting, whereby people taste Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot, Riesling, Chardonnay (all white) and Merlot, Shiraz, Pinot Noir, and Cabinet Sauvignon (all red).