The Process: A Wine Course in Four Pages
By Carolyn Evans Hammond, published in Tidings magazine, September 2010.
The business of wine tasting is a curious thing. It’s very different than wine drinking. When I taste a wine wearing my critic’s cap, I pull apart the pleasure experience. I hold each aspect of the wine up against the cold yardstick of imaginary perfection. How’s the colour, fruit, alcohol, and acidity? What about the tannins, balance, complexity, and length? Is it typical? Mature? There’s no quiet conversation, eye-batting flirtation, suggestive comments, or even jazz. Instead, I’m alone at home or with other wine critics in a lab or professional tasting, spittoon in hand. Yes, I spit; inebriation wreaks havoc on tasting notes.
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