Gifting & Entertaining
How to Throw a Wine Tasting At Home
Our new set, the Holiday Collection, is the perfect excuse to host a wine tasting with friends to try all the new grape varietals and develop your palate. Here’s our guide to throwing your own tasting, including how to taste (step by step), flight suggestions if you don't want to open all six bottles and the perfect, party-friendly pairing.
Step One: The Setup
Set up your tasting around a table, whether that’s in your dining room or a coffee table in your living room. It’s important that everyone has enough space to sit and take notes.
Make sure you have enough wine glasses. It’s not critical that each wine has its own glass—you can absolutely pour one wine at a time, but if you have extras it can be nice to pour them all at once so that you can compare color, aroma and taste all at once.
Place a tasting sheet next to everyone’s station—you can make copies of the one we provided in our Holiday Collection guide, or you can simply provide a sheet of paper with each wine listed.
Here is the official order that you should taste in: Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Bobal, Merlot, Syrah, Penedès Tinto.
If you don’t want to open all six wines at once, here are our suggestions for a pared back tasting:
Merlot + Syrah + Bobal + Penedes Tinto
These are our reds, side by side. Tasting all of the red wines at once will really show you how different every grape tastes.
Viognier + Bobal
These are our uncommon grapes: lesser-known varietals that are every bit as delicious.
Syrah + Penedès Tinto + Viognier
This is your world tour: three wines from three different countries (USA, Spain & France).
Sauvignon Blanc + Merlot
These are your perfect dinner wines: two crowd-pleasers that are great for sipping over a meal.
Pairing idea: we suggest serving a big charcuterie board with lots of flavors and textures—there will be something to pair with each wine, and it will also act as a palate cleanser.
Step Two: How to Taste
Here's how to taste like an expert: Look, Smell, Taste & Discuss.
First, take a look at the wine in your glass. Give it a swirl. Notice the color and viscosity. Next, give your glass a deep inhale. Remember that swirling helps the aromas release in different ways. After that, take a sip. Hold the wine in your mouth and get some air in there to get the wine oxygenated. This helps you pull out different flavors. Finally, chat with a friend (or write in a notebook) all of the different aromas and flavors you're reminded of. There are no wrong answers!
In the printed tasting guide that comes with each Holiday Collection, we even have a special glossary of terms to help you talk through each tasting!
Step Three: The Notes
Try and write your own corresponding tasting notes—everyone’s palate is different and it can be fun to compare and contrast what flavors are coming through for everyone.
Step Four: Have Fun
Remember: tasting wine is a joy and there are no wrong answers. Once you’ve made your way through the list, it’s time to pour a little bit more of your favorites, dig into your cheese plate, and spend the rest of your evening connecting with your friends.
Some common aromas & tasting notes
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