Sunday, March 6, 2011

Tasting & Pairing

Yesterday was my first day of formal wine training. Since I knew before I even started that I was going to love the class, I am very glad that my expectations were confirmed. Our first lesson was on systematic tasting. I will not share all of the details of my lessons with you here, but I will share things that I think were useful or interesting.
In class, we tasted six different wines with nine different basic foods representing sweet, bitter (tannic), acidic, salty and spicy. After trying them with the wines, we ranked them on a 0 to 3 scale of how well they worked together (3 being the highest). The results are here and depict some simple rules for pairing. Several combinations are missing. You are going to have to experiment on your own to fill in those blanks. I highly recommend it anyway.
The adjectives on the left are for food; those on the right are for wine.
salty + acid in a white = 3
salty + acid in a red = 0-1
salty + tannin = -1
savory + sweet = 3
salty + sweet = 3
bitter + tannin = 0
spicy + sweet = 3
sweet + tannin = 0
acid + acid = 2
high acid + low acid = 0
sweet + sweet = 3
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