Côte du Rhône

The Rhône is a region in South East France, along the Rhône river. The majority of the wines are red blends, based on Grenache and Syrah, though there are also great white wines made of Viognier, Marsanne, and Roussanne. The Rhône region is split into the Southern and Northern Rhône — with distinct differences between…

Week 3: Chardonnay

Chardonnay is one of the most divisive white wines: are you team butter or team crisp apple? When I was first starting to drink wine, I heard about the “buttery” taste of Chardonnay and I could taste nothing else for years. Through all my wine classes, I would dread the Chardonnay tastings, not wanting to…

Week 3: Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blanc is my go-to white wine when at a bar or restaurant. It’s incredibly variable but always reliable – read on to learn more. HistorySauvignon Blanc, meaning “Wild White,” is a white grape and a parent to Cabernet Sauvignon. It likely originated in the South of France and is now one of the most planted…

Week 3: Riesling

When I first drank Riesling, I thought of it as a sweet wine, but did you know that Riesling can also be dry? Riesling is known as a highly acidic, fruity, and aromatic white wine. Let’s dive into some of the basics:  History/BackgroundLikely originating from Germany and now Germany’s most planted white grape, Riesling has…

Week 3: Pinot Grigio

Week 3 of Wine Tasting is devoted to learning about white wine. There are hundreds of grape varietals, but let’s dig in to Pinot Grigio, also known as Pinot Gris, a very light, white wine:  HistoryPinot Gris grapes were originally grown in Burgundy, France. Around the 1300, they were brought to Switzerland and then into…

Tasting Week 2: Tasting Notes

Isn’t it impressive (or annoying) when someone buys a wine because 2015 was a great vintage of Bordeaux ? Likely, that person knows that 2015 was a good vintage, and even what Bordeaux is, because they’ve been taking notes on wine for years and following the industry. However, for even the more basic questions –…

Tasting Week 2: Spitting

I didn’t spit when tasting wine until I entered a formal Wine Studies program. Spitting wine just seemed to be the opposite of my goal. The point of wine is to drink it, right? When I’m drinking wine in general, my intension is to drink it. I may spend the first few moments tasting the…

Tasting Week 1: Taste

The final step in tasting is to actually taste! During one tasting class I was told to take a tiny sip first, followed by a larger sip where you swirl the wine to coat your mouth. For me, swirling the wine in my mouth doesn’t seem to help much, but taking a tiny sip first,…

Tasting Week 1: Smell

The next stage in tasting is to smell the wine. This is the part where you see all these instaworthy swirling photos. To help aerate the wine and release more of the aromas, you want to swirl the glass. This takes some practice so that you don’t end up with wine all over your table,…

Tasting Week 1: Look

After you’ve poured the wine – what’s next? The first step in actually tasting the wine is to look at it. Having your glass be less than half full really helps in this step as a larger pour will mean the wine may appear artificially darker and become harder to assess. Look Tilt the wine…