So You Want to be a Wine Connoisseur: Sip

look swirl smell tasteBecoming a wine connoisseur requires a bit of know-how and some technique. Among the basics are the 5 S’s, being see, swirl, sniff, sip, and savor. Sipping wine involves methodology, part of which is allowing the wine to oxidate in the mouth. An important point here is that the wine you drink needs to be stored in the right conditions to prevent premature oxidation. For instance, the cork will shrink, allow oxygen into the bottle, and cause a leak if storage conditions are too dry.  Wine humidifiers from Wine Guardian are among the excellent products we use at Rosehill Wine Cellars to ensure that the wine isn’t spoiled by such things as a dry cork.

Ultimate wine sipping

You don’t have to be at a wine tasting to engage in the five “S’s” of wine drinking. There is a distinct difference in one huge respect, however. When at a wine tasting, it can be very important to frequently spit instead of swallow, since it’s poor etiquette to become overly intoxicated in that setting. True wine lovers want to experience wine to the fullest on every occasion. The sip technique, therefore, is recommended anytime you’re enjoying a glass of wine.

Here are tips for drinking like a wine connoisseur. Don’t worry if anyone judges you and thinks you look pretentious. If you really love wine, you’re doing just the right thing:

  • As you take a healthy “sip” of wine, roll the wine around in your mouth gently while pursing your lips. Suck in a little bit of air, to oxygenate the wine; and give it another taste, to fully indulge your palate. Only then should you swallow or, depending on the circumstance, spit.

As you taste the wine, allow your taste buds to make determinations of whether or not the wine is harmonious, balanced, complex, evolved, and complete. These are elements to be considered for the final S, which is to savor the wine, to be covered in the next part of the series.

More about corked wine

In case you’ve ever wondered, the primary reason waiters in restaurants allow customers to initially taste a new bottle or glass of wine is to ensure that the wine isn’t corked. You could ruin a fine meal, after all, if you match up a delicious entrée with a certain wine only to discover that the wine has spoiled. Be sure to contact Rosehill Wine Cellars if you live anywhere in or around Toronto because we know how to ensure proper storage, which often involves a reliable humidifier in addition to a custom wine cellar with a wine cooling unit. Check back for more of our series on becoming a wine connoisseur.