The Guide to Wine Tasting in Cyprus (Part 1) | George Kassianos

WINE TASTING CYPRUS

WINE TASTING CYPRUS

The Guide to Wine Tasting in Cyprus (Part 1)

Learn the Basics of Wine Tasting with George Kassianos

Wine Tasting Cyprus – When drinking a glass of new wine in Cyprus, or anywhere in the world for that matter, do you observe the wine to understand its contents or are you more of a ‘like it or not’ wine drinker? The science behind wine tasting reveals a lot about the wine in your glass and a professional sommelier’s approach on ‘how to taste wine’ can be summarised in 4 simple steps – look, swirl, smell and sip.

1. Look at the Wine

Firstly, to get the most out of your selected wine, choose the right wine glass and make sure to serve it at the recommended wine temperature. Then, check the colour of the wine and wine clarity by tilting the glass away from you and working inwards from the rim edges to the centre of the glass. Look out for sediment in wine which is often referred to as the ‘dregs in wine’ or ‘wine diamonds’ that appear in the bottom of the wine glass and determine the wine’s opacity which can reveal the age and type of grape used to make the wine you are drinking. Is the wine dark or light in colour, cloudy or clear, and what does this mean exactly?

2. Smell the Wine

Once you have looked at the wine to determine its colour, clarity and opacity, the next step in wine tasting is to swirl the wine around the glass to release the wine aromas. A wine’s aroma is an excellent indicator of its quality and unique wine characteristics and can only be truly appreciated by then sniffing the wine. By swirling the wine around the glass, you allow more oxygen into the wine but it is worth knowing that oxygen can play a part as both friend and enemy of wine. In the beginning, the influence of oxygen is excellent for wine because as soon as a wine encounters oxygen, it begins to break down, which most wine lovers and sommeliers refer to as a wine “opening up”. As the wine opens, it gives off its aromas and softens, which allows you to taste the wine better. When you smell a wine, you are preparing your brain for the wine you are about to taste.  Think about what scents you are picking up and keep in mind that there are no wrong answers!

3. Taste the Wine

Finally, taste the wine. Start with a small sip and let it roll around your mouth. There are three stages to refining the taste of wine: Attack Phase, Evolution Phase and The Finish.

WINE TASTING – ATTACK PHASE

Whoever thought wine tasting could get so complex? The Attack Phase in wine tasting is made up of four separate components: tannin levels, acidity, alcohol content and residual sugar. What is the first sensation of the wine on your palate? Is it well-balanced? This phase is not about the actual flavour of the wine you are tasting but more about the general wine intensity and wine complexity and takes into consideration factors such as whether the wine is sweet or dry, light or heavy, soft or firm, crisp or creamy!

WINE TASTING – EVOLUTION PHASE

Now, let’s talk about the actual taste and flavour profile on the palate! This is called the Evolution Phase. Different flavours vary for red wines and white wines but some of the most typical flavours to look out for in red wine are fruits and herbs such as figs, plums, berries, cloves or cinnamon. You may even detect a certain smokiness or woody flavour such as oak or cedar. White wines are quite different in that the fruitiness often derives from fruits such as citrus or tropical fruits and can also offer a more floral ‘earthy’ flavour such as honey or butter. The Evolution Phase in wine tasting is your chance to try and determine the flavour. What are your tastebuds picking up?

WINE TASTING – THE FINISH

The final phase in wine tasting is often referred to as The Finish and relates to the aftertaste of the wine and how long it lasts inside the mouth. Ask yourself how long it lasted and whether it was light-bodied, medium-bodied or full-bodied. Are you keen to take another sip or did you find the wine too heavy or bitter at the end?

READ PART 2 OF THE GUIDE TO WINE TASTING IN CYPRUS HERE

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

George Kassianos is the President of the Cyprus Sommeliers Association. He has also recently been appointed the Contest and General Assembly Liaison Officer by the International Sommeliers Association (ASI), which will take him all over the world to attend international wine events and competitions. He writes for many publications, including Cyprus in Style Magazine and the weekly wine column of the Sunday Cyprus Mail. He is a wine and hotel educator and presenter, and holds regular wine events across Cyprus. He was appointed by the Government to be a member of the Wine Expert Committee, which certifies PDO wines and acts as an advisory board to the wine and spirits industry. Read an Exclusive Interview with George Kassianos and learn more about George and wine tasting in Cyprus.

READ PART 2 OF THE GUIDE TO WINE TASTING IN CYPRUS HERE

Published by Cyprus in Style Magazine August 2020 | #InStyleBusinessNetwork | Photography by Amita Cathcart | Wine Tasting Cyprus

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Wine Tasting Cyprus – Cyprus in Style Wine Network was born as a result of the hugely popular ‘All About Wine’ section by Cyprus in Style Magazine. Bringing together all the latest news from the world of wine in Cyprus, and providing the ultimate platform for wine industry experts to share their knowledge with wine lovers across the Island. Stay informed about the Cypriot wine scene and receive access to exclusive wine events and deals in Paphos, Limassol and Nicosia. Enjoy exclusive interviews with leading influential wine personalities in Cyprus, and meet the winemakers behind your favourite wines. Cyprus in Style Network also features news on spirits and gastronomic delights to complement your choice of beverage. All for the love of wine. For more information, send us a message here.

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