Need to Know Wine Basics

How to Taste Wine Like a Professional with Montesquieu Winery: Building Confidence with 5 Simple Steps

April 12, 2012, by: Lisa Duff Khajavi

Stéphane Derenoncourt immersed in tasting Cheval Blanc

Many believe that accomplished wine tasters are a rare breed with special abilities. However, wine tasting involves skills that contrary to popular belief are not difficult to master. Follow these five steps and in no time you will be tasting wine like a confident professional.

Before we get started it is important to point out that each experience varies as everyone’s taste buds are different—the array, type and how many you have. Thresholds and tolerances differ regarding sweetness, acidity, tannins and such, as well as our perceptions of what we are sensing based on our previous experiences and preferences.

A successful wine tasting provides the opportunity to focus on the wines at hand, which in other settings are often consumed quickly with many distractions. Pay close attention, as every wine tells a different story. Each experience is a building block, a sensory experience that will add to your collective foundation, giving depth and breadth to your journey.  This is the joy of tasting wine! View Full Post

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Decanting Basics, by Montesquieu Winery: Part 2 — How to Decant?

August 14, 2011, by: Lisa Duff Khajavi

In Decanting Basics by Montesquieu Winery Part 1, we covered all about why and when to decant, relaying how although it may seem complicated, decanting is really a very straightforward and effective tool to help you get the most out of your wine experience.

To summarize, the reasons why to decant fall into three main categories: removal of sediment, aeration and aesthetics. When to decant relates to each of these categories and can be easily determined by some general rules of thumb.

Sediment. Wines that are ten years or older should be decanted as they are more likely to have sediment, especially reds that have higher tannin content, generally fuller-bodied reds. However, it doesn’t hurt to check all bottles, especially if you are not sure whether they are unfiltered or unfined. To determine whether or not a bottle has sediment, simply hold in front of a light or candle. Vintage Port always has sediment so should always be decanted. View Full Post

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Decanting Basics, by Montesquieu Winery: Part 1 — Why and When to Decant?

July 12, 2011, by: Lisa Duff Khajavi

With so many decanters and accessories to choose from, for some the idea of decanting may be intimidating or seem pretentious. We at Montesquieu Winery would like to share the basics of decanting because it is actually a very simple and extremely valuable tool that can bring out the best in your wines!

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