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Top Questions To Ask At Wine Tasting In Texas?
Wine tasting in Texas is one intimate yet intimidating process when one lacks the knowledge about wine. This can make you be nervous and tongue-tied instead of enjoying the wine tasting, having fun and being social. It doesn’t matter how well versed you are, wine tasting always provides an opportunity for you to expand your knowledge and have a greater appreciation of everything vino.
Tasting room conversation should not intimidate you from engaging in the fun and social activity held by wineries in Texas. Here is a list of questions that will give you deeper insight into the wineries and winemaking processes.
Best questions to ask at a wine tasting in Texas
Frequently asked questions on red wine
1. Was oak used to age the wine?
Oak contributes to the wine flavors e.g. vanilla or smoky flavors. It is also very useful when it comes to mellowing young wine as allows slow infusion of oxygen into wine cutting wines biting flavors.
If it non-oaked red wine, ask why the winery choose to go that way.
2. How long was the ageing period? / How long did the wine stay in the barrel/bottle?
The period the wine is allowed to age in the oak determines how much the tannins mellow or how much the flavors are imparted into the wine.
3. Which country was the oak manufactured? America, French, or elsewhere?
Winemakers use American oak for sweet flavors like more vanilla i.e. robust wines like Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon. The French oak is mainly subtle so it’s used for lighter wines like Pinot Noir.
4. Was wine aged in large casks, small traditional barrels, or a combination?
Fewer flavors are imparted with large casks/barrels as less amount of wine is in contact with the barrel.
Frequently asked questions on white wine
5. Was wine aged in stainless steel?
If the wine you taste is crisp, stainless steel barrels might have been used in the fermentation process as it lets the wine to retain its pure taste.
6. Did the wine go through malolactic fermentation?
Wines that are round with full-bodied tastes (buttery flavor like in Chardonnay) go through a second fermentation called malolactic fermentation.
7. When should I drink this wine?
Some white wines should be enjoyed while still young hence it is important to ask ‘by what date’ the wine will be appreciated.
Frequently asked questions on grapes and wines blends
8. Are there any blends or grape varietals in the wine?
This is a great conversation starter as it helps you know the scientific composition of the flavors put together to get the finished product you are enjoying. More details on this are found on the bottle label.
9. What does each grape varietal bring to the table?
Different grapes are used for a specific purpose and they all possess different aromas, tannins, color, acidity, etc. It is important to know what that particular grape add to the wine.
10. What’s the vineyard history?
A wine tasting in Texas can be held at a vineyard or at one of the wineries in Texas, it is important to know the heritage or history of the venue. It can be one of the first questions to ask as it sets the scene for your experience. Is it a family-owned vineyard? How much is the family’s involvement with the winemaking?
Frequently asked questions on taking the wine
11. What is the recommended temperature for serving the wine?
Temperature greatly influence the taste of the wine hence you should be aware of the appropriate temperature to serve your particular wine. 57 degrees Fahrenheit is a good starting point to serve both red and white wines.
12. What would you pair this with?
Wine and food is a great combination and knowing the best pairing to create a delicious meal are what you should strive for. Wine guides are equipped with knowledge of what wines go with various types of meat, fish, poultry, cheese, and desserts.
13. What is the best glass to serve wine in?
A large glass is often recommended as it’s generous and gives room to swirl the wine. Generally, a glass should be clear, long stem, thin glass, with a slight inward curve at the top.
The most important thing to remember is to have fun and enjoy wine tasting in Texas as it’s a social gathering as well as a learning experience.
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