Tasting 101- Five Wine Tasting Terms to Know

We know how it feels. You’re out to eat with friends and someone orders a bottle you’ve never heard of before. Or you’re spending a day checking out Nova Scotia’s own wineries and decide to taste a few. Or maybe you’ve decided to attend one of Bishop’s Cellar’s tasting events for the first time.

No matter the situation, trying new wines and joining the conversation can be overwhelming. We’re here to help! The most basic recipe for anyone to learn more about wine is: Look at it. Smell it. Taste it. Talk about it with others. Repeat.

When you’re listening or participating in conversations about tasting wine, here are 5 terms you’ll want to know:

Nose

The smell of the wine which influences the taste. You might hear words like “appley” and “raisiny” which we recognize as aromas, or you might even hear words like “fresh” and “tired” referring to the age of the wine and how it changes the taste.

Palate

The feel and the taste of wine in your mouth.

Body

The way the wine feels in your mouth. You’ll often hear people describe wines being full-bodied, medium-bodied or medium-weight, or light-bodied. A full-bodied wine is thicker and coats your mouth like honey while a light-bodied wine is more refreshing and has a watery feeling in your mouth.

Length

The amount of time the sensations of taste and aroma stay in your mouth after you swallow the wine.

Finish

The taste that remains in your mouth after you swallow the wine. A long finish indicates a wine of good quality.

You’ll also find these terms on the labels of many wine bottles. Why not try them out next time you taste a new wine? Remember, practice makes perfect and there are so many worse things to practice!

Cheers,

The Bishop’s Cellar team