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Taste wine like the experts

by Sandrine Tranchard on
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The harvest is over, the wine has been bottled, and the time has come for wine makers to invite the public into their cellars for some wine-tasting.

But did you know that wine-tasting is not done using any old glass? Special glasses, following the guidelines set out in ISO 3591:1977, Sensory analysis – Apparatus – Wine-tasting glass, are used to help you enjoy its full intensity.

This International Standard defines the shape and dimensions of the glass to ensure that the opening is narrower than the body. This distinctive shape helps concentrate the bouquet (the odour), and helps release the full body of the wine.

In addition, a standardized wine-tasting glass must be made from clear, colourless glass which helps the taster to gauge the shade and clarity of the wine.

Therefore, this standardized glass allows you to observe, smell and taste the wine to its full capacity. You can examine the wine in the glass to assess the depth of its colour, inhale its essence to associate flavours with its scent, and hold it in your mouth for a few seconds, just enough time for your brain to interpret the myriad of sensations it is receiving.

So, you are now ready to enjoy, with moderation, a nice glass of wine with your friends, be it a "nouveau" or a champagne!

ISO has many standards for sensory analysis that help professionals worldwide define the texture, odour and taste of food and drink. To find out more please see the work of the technical committee behind the standards, ISO/TC34/SC12.