How to become a Beer Connoisseur

Becoming a Beer Connoisseur takes time, dedication, and most importantly a taste for beer from lots of drinking. Education and experience are key to taking your beer drinking to the next level. The next level in my mind isn’t downing an entire micro keg in a faster time than the night before when you got wasted at a Frat buddies house and puked on his girlfriend. I am talking about sitting down with a friend or 2, bringing a 6 pack of something you haven’t tried before, and talking about the flavors that you experience in your 2 maybe 3 bottles.

Experience comes from trying whatever beer you find, even if you don’t like the style. You can’t just limit yourself to beers that fit your “comfort zone.” Becoming truly seasoned means taking the good with the bad. There may be an IPA that you come to like where as others have failed you miserably. Please don’t listen to anyone that tells you that you have to move on after trying something that you don’t like. I haven’t liked hoppy beers for years and recently stumbled onto something that I have come to enjoy. Another addition that I have tried is a smoked beer I had at Dragonmead Brewery in Michigan. Maybe I will come across something that I like in the future.

Education can include such topics as self brewing, beer styles, ingredients, and heritage. Many, if not all, European brewing styles are superior to those in North America because they have been at it for far longer than even our major breweries so please don’t think that you have reached stardom after trying everything that Budweiser has to offer because I assure you that Bud Select isn’t the smoothest beer in the world. Going through the sometimes painstaking process of brewing your own beer is a great learning experience because little changes can effect the final taste of what you choose to brew.

My only 2 pieces of advice are: get out there are and drink whatever you can, in moderation please, and try brewing your own stuff. Who knows, your tastes may be the next Samuel Adams flavors.

Source:
1. How to become a beer connoisseur: the basics of craft beer | The …
2. Coffee vs. Green Tea
3. How to Become a Professional Beer Expert | Fox News

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blogs.poughkeepsiejournal.com

How to a Keg Cold

No backyard party is complete without some cold adult beverages. If you have a large number of guests attending, a keg of beer may be your best option. Kegs are more economical on a per ounce basis and are often fresher than their bottled counterparts. The major drawback of kegs is their sheer size and keeping all that beer cold.

A keg holds 15 gallons of beer. It’s also pressurized to keep the beer fresh. Because of this, the beer inside doesn’t stay fresh more than a day or two after being tapped. Unless you have a kegerator to keep the beer pressurized and cold, it needs to be consumed quickly. Since very few people have kegerators, and no one wants to drink warm beer, your best option is to put the keg on ice.

To ice down the keg, you’ll first need a 55 gallon trash can. It’s best to purchase a new one specifically for this purpose, since drinking beer from a dirty trash can is undesirable. If you’re using the keg indoors, you may want to place a piece of plastic underneath the trash can to protect your floor from any spilled beer.

You’ll need about eight bags of ice to put in the can to keep your keg cold. Before you place the keg in the can, however, put a layer of ice about four inches deep in the bottom of the can. Have a friend help you lift the keg into the trash can and fill the trash can with ice until it’s just slightly below the top of the keg.

After filling the can with ice, pour half a gallon of water over the ice to create a slurry in the bottom of the can. This will help make the keg as cold as possible. Let the keg sit for about an hour before tapping. After the keg has been on ice for about an hour, tap it, and enjoy. You’ll probably need to add more ice to the can as it melts off during the party.

Another method of keeping a keg cold is to use a kegerator. A kegerator is simply a refrigerator designed specifically for kegs. It has a tap and keeps the keg pressurized with carbon dioxide so it stays fresh, just like your local bar. Obviously, this is a more expensive option than the traditional trash can and ice method, but it’s beneficial if you have a lot of parties or want to keep a keg for more than a day or two.

Source:
1. How to Chill a Keg of Beer: 6 Steps – wikiHow
2. HCG 500 Calorie Diet: Lowering Calories
3. Kegs at a wedding…how to keep them cold without the ugly …

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www.trs13.com

How to Store Tea

Even the best tea will lose its flavour and aroma if it is not stored properly. There are a few simple guidelines for storing tea. The first rule of storing tea is: don’t buy too much tea at once. Most tea types taste best when used as fresh as possible.

Tea’s main enemies are light, moisture, air, heat and strong odours. Tea absorbs moisture and odours easily, it does not like temperature changes and its flavour can be affected by direct light.

Tea connoiseurs usually recommend that tea should be stored in a cool and dry place. Unlike coffee, tea should not be stored in the freezer. At the same time, if tea is kept too close to a source of heat or in too warm a place, the tea leaves will soon lose their flavour. Tea also likes constant temperature and does not react well to temperature changes. Tea does not like rapid changes in humidity either; it absorbs moisture easily and can become mouldy if it comes in contact with too much moisture.

In addition to moisture, tea can absorb whatever is nearby including strong odours. Tea should be stored away from anything that has a strong odour as it can absorb odours from spices, from coffee or even from other teas: a spicy tea can affect the flavour and aroma of a delicate tea, such as Jasmine.

Tea should be stored in an air-tight container, since contact with air will affect its flavour. (One of the very few exceptions is the very special Pu-erh tea, which actually needs some air flow). An air-tight metal container is one of the best options for storing tea. Glass containers are sometimes used as well, but a clear glass container must be kept out of direct light as light can affect the flavour of the tea leaves as well as their colour. Ceramic containers are sometimes used to store tea but they are not always as air-tight as metal containers.

Green tea is said to be more sensitive to its environment than black tea. Green teas can lose their flavour faster and it is usually recommended that green tea leaves should be stored for between six to twelve months, whereas black teas can be stored for at least a year. However, the fresher the tea leaves are, the better the cup of tea made with them will taste, and the best option to guarantee a good flavour is to buy tea more often but in smaller quantities. Those who buy tea in bulk can try to preserve the flavour of their tea leaves by keeping most of the tea in a separate air-tight container, and a having a smaller container for everyday use.

Source:
1. Upton Tea Imports: How do I store my tea properly? Will it go stale?
2. Foods High In Vitamin K2
3. How to Properly Store Tea – World of Tea

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quinoakaleandexhale.com

How to Roast Chiles

Hot “Big Jim” green chili is the best selection for top of the line chili rellenos and thick bell pepper like meat for crunchy green chili salsa. “Big Jim” is generally a mild pepper so some detective work is needed to locate the farm providing the desired spicy flavor. The Southern New Mexico “Chile Aficionados” will even pick their own chilies from the plants (if the farmer allows it) to be certain that the chili is fresh.

Many of the natives also have a chili roasting ritual that they are dedicated to. They will ceremoniously cook peppers a few at a time on a grill. Those who value the pure flavor of chili and do not want all their chili dishes to have a smoked flavor will not use a charcoal cooking process.

During the chili harvest there are professional chili roasters in operation. They are found outside some grocery stores and at farms where the harvest is being sold. There is a retired roaster who cooked peppers in Mesilla Park, New Mexico for years. He had a body shop at this location which gave him the ability to build and modify his own chili roasting device and technique to near perfection.

Green chili stew and enchiladas call for a lot more cooking of the chili, however. even these recipes benefit from the right roasting technique. Roasting chili and letting it cool down on its own results in a thoroughly cooked pepper that often becomes rubbery and less flavorful. Sweet Old Bob of Mesilla Park has a better idea.

His design included a roasting drum made of metal diamond mesh about the size of a fifty gallon drum. There is an electric motor that turns the drum. The array of propane burners under the drum produces a flame that rivals the afterburner of an F-14 jet. People stood back as the skin got burnt off of about fifty pounds of their chili in six minutes.

The next step is the one that gave Bob the edge over other chili roasters. He would dump the fire hot peppers right out of the basket into a bin of cool water. Most of the chili would loose its skin while the remainder of the pepper would be uncooked. Bagging and freezing the chili after it was sufficiently cooled was left to the customer. The process also has the benefit of minimizing freezer burn as the meat of the pepper was not steamed and saturated with moisture that results when it is slow cooled.

Now that Bob has retired his roaster the best I can do is keep in mind that hot quick cooking and fast cooling of my chili obtains the best results. It would be nice to be able to have Bob working his magic on a year´s supply of chili in such a minimal amount of time. A little ceremonious ritual is now included by necessity until another pro chili roaster steps up to the plate.

Source:
1. How To…Roast Green Chilies | The Pioneer Woman
2. Is Almond Milk Good For You
3. Roasted Hatch Chiles | Frieda's Inc. – The Specialty Produce …

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newsdesk.si.edu

How to Properly Bag your Groceries

Knowing how to bag groceries properly is essential for every shopper. As a shopper, you should teach yourself how to bag your groceries well.

For most people, knowing how to properly bag groceries is seen as a no brainier task, however you will be surprised, to find out the number of times that you find yourself unpacking squashed tomatoes, eggs among others after a trip to the grocery store.

The following are a few basic tips on how to properly bag your groceries.

Pack similar items together

If you want to avoid food contamination, you should sort your groceries before packing them into bags.

Pack the frozen foods together, the fresh foods together and the dry foods together. You should put all the non food products in their respective bags as well.

Sort the groceries

Sorting the groceries before you start packing them will save you lots of time and keep your groceries intact.

You can make your work so much easier by grouping the frozen items into separate groups such as meats, poultry, ice cream and yogurt, uncooked pastries and cooked food etc.

All the frozen foods should be packed together as way of retaining the same temperature among the frozen groceries. Avoid packing too many items in the same bag which can easily cause the bag to tear especially if the bag is paper based.

You should also remember to pack the uncooked and cooked frozen foods separately to avoid the risk of salmonella food contamination or food poisoning.

Pack all the bloody meats such as pork, chops, and liver etc in separate plastic bags and avoid cross-contamination with other frozen foods.

The vegetables and fruits should also be packed separately. This will help in avoiding the risk of them getting squashed and will also help with maintaining their freshness.

 All canned food items should be packed in the same bag which has the heavy items such as juice packs among others.

 You should never pack fragile items such as eggs, potato chips or bread with other food items which can easily squash them and disfigure them.

You can pack all the snacks in one bag to avoid the risk of their shape getting ruined. All the non food products such as cleaning products should be bagged together.

Depending on the number of the non food products that you have bought, you can use one big bag if available to pack all these items and avoid the risk of food contamination.

Bag your groceries according to the different sizes

You should always make it a rule to pack the heavier items at the bottom of the bag and the lighter items at the top. Remember to keep the more fragile items at the very top when packing your groceries to avoid damage.

 If the grocery bag seems flimsy, you can reinforce it at the bottom by using the boxed items as your base.

Avoid overloading the bags

When packing your groceries, avoid filling the bags too much and make sure that they can carry the weight well without getting torn.

When packing your groceries, you should limit the number of heavy items that you put in each bag. Distribute the weight evenly when packing and avoid accidents which will lead to losses.

If you are not too sure about how much weight the bag can carry, then you should pack your groceries in smaller quantities as a way of making sure that the weight is evenly distributed.

Source:
1. How to Properly Bag Groceries – Instructables
2. South Beach Diet Phase 2: Benefits, Tips, and Reviews
3. Grocery Store Jobs 101: How To Properly Bag Groceries | WorkPulse

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www.spar.co.za

How to Peel or Skin a Tomato Easily

Make rosettes, by using a sharp knife with a point. I prefer serrated knives for this task. Start at the stem end and carefully, peel into around the circumference of the tomatoes, peeling so that the peeling forms one long jagged strip. Even if the strip breaks the rosette is salvageable, just counties making the strip. Then roll the peeling, pinch one end of the roll, arrange the rolled layers at the other end, to resemble the petals’ of a rose. The tomatoes used to make rosettes should be slightly under ripe.
Use to decorate any number of summer salads or along side a tender beef roast. For a special luncheon, table piece one could arrange a platter of tomato rosettes, in combination with an assortment of fresh herbs.-
However, the ‘puttin up’ of the ripe and overripe tomatoes must be addressed.
1- pour your tomatoes in side of the kitchen sink. Make certain that the sink is
plugged.
2- Pour as much boiling water to cover as you can, over the tomatoes.
3- Plug then fill the other side of the kitchen sink with cold water, adding ice if
possible. The ice will aid in your comfort as you finish processing the tomatoes.
4- Place a large container next to that sink.
5- Wait; gently stir the tomatoes around in the sink within the hot water. Using a
large slotted spoon or tongs, lift the tomatoes out that have busted their
skins. Dont remove them to soon, or the skin removable with be a bit difficult.
6- Place them in the cold water, working with your hands submerged in the cold
water, rub the skins off of the tomatoes.
7- Once the skin has been removed, drop them into the container.
8- Slice, dice or puree the tomatoes at this point you have several alternatives.
We make use of all the juice as well, bagging tomatoes pieces and the juices
form them.
9- (A) if you are frizzing the tomatoes, scoop the tomatoes up in a measuring cup,
and then pour them into freezer bags or containers. If using bags lay flat to
freeze.
(b) Canning in mason jars is another alternative there are numerous recopies for
that.

Use these tomatoes for a variety of winter dishes, like stews and soups. I would like to shave one of my families all time favorites. Truly bringing in the warm of summer with each steamy spoonful of this flavorful soup
2 qt. bags of processed tomatoes in its juice.
1 can cream or whole kernel corn
2 pieces bacon, sliced into small pieces
One handful, fresh or frozen okra. (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste. This soup is wonderful served as above, with a hunk of crackling and jalapeo cornbread. Although I love the soup as is, the herbal lover in me often has to add a pinch of this and a pinch of that. Herbs like parsley or chives. This can be simmered into the soup, or sprinkled on top raw.
Here in the south people are expected to grow at least few tomatoes. Those from the okra generations can remember harvesting large amounts of fresh tomatoes. My grandpas’ garden was massive. It had to be in order to feed all of us kids. All sixteen of us kids, was expected to help out with maintaining the garden, but when harvest time came in for each crop planted, we were again called to duty.
Carrying a large basket we would have to walk the rows, picking the bright red luscious fruit from the vine. Nothing evokes such pleasant childhood memories as picking big, overripe tomatoes from the vine. Biting into it as if was an apple. Busting the skin, filling your mouth with sun simmered, and warm, succulent flavor. Be warned when you first bite into the tomato, juice will squirt everywhere. You have not experienced a good tomato until you have tried it. In its ripe robust stage. The tomatoes so often found in grocery stores have no flavor.
We always pick a few green tomatoes, to fry in meal. Sometimes the green tomatoes are made into a relish that is served with an assortment of fish dishes.

Source:
1. The 3 Best Ways to Peel a Tomato — Tips from The Kitchn | The Kitchn
2. Gluten-Free Beer for Celiacs
3. How to Peel Tomatoes | Serious Eats

Image Credit
whatscookingamerica.net

How to Make a Butterbean Casserole

Bean dishes are under-rated.  People are only just beginning to realize the true value of this superfood.  Not only are beans cheap, therefore providing economic cooking, they are packed with protein and most of the essential nutritional elements needed for optimum health.

Beans and pulses such as lentils come under the common term of legume, but for convenience are usually referred to simply as beans. They are plant-based (grown from plants) therefore they provide protein that is low-fat, free of saturated fats and are free of the bad cholesterol fats.  In addition they are high in fiber, folate acid, vitamins and minerals including the Vitamin B complex, Vitamin C and K, manganese, iron, phosphorus and copper.  

In fact, beans are one of the healthiest foods you can eat.  They are very high in antioxidants that help prevent cancers and aging.  With high protein and high carbohydrates, beans are excellent for maintaining steady blood sugar levels, a great aid not only for diabetics and for preventing heart disease, but are wonderful for losing weight.  They gives a slow release of energy over a long period of time so one feels fuller for longer without consuming huge amounts of calories.  In addition, beans contain only about 3% fat and that is unsaturated fat. 

The fiber in beans is water soluble helping to maintain a healthy bowel and to help lower cholesterol levels in the bloodstream.  

 Experts recommend eating 3-4 cups of beans per week to get the optimum benefit from them.   At a time when everyone is looking to make cuts in their household budgets, beans really are the way to go. 

 Some people may be concerned that beans can cause excessive flatulence but this can be reduced by around 70% by rinsing, soaking and boiling beans before adding to your dish.

 This recipe is one of my favorite winter warmer casseroles.  It uses in-season root vegetables and butterbeans to make a tasty and nutritious meal that is ideal for the diet conscious.

 INGREDIENTS:
1 onion – chopped
2 carrots – copped
1 large leek – chopped
1 small turnip – chopped
A handful peas
A handful green beans
4 ounces butterbeans – pre-prepared
1 liter vegetable stock
1 teaspoon sage
1 teaspoon thyme
Black pepper

Grated cheese mixed with a cup of wholemeal breadcrumbs and a pinch of sage and thyme.

INSTRUCTIONS:

Pre-heat oven to Gas Mark 4, 190 degrees, 150 in fan assisted ovens.

Wash and prepare all the vegetables, cutting into medium sized chunks.

In a large deep casserole, put all the ingredients except the butterbeans.
Covered, and cook in a medium oven for 30 minutes.  Check with a knife that vegetables are soft.
Add butterbeans and top with grated cheese mixed with breadcrumbs and dried herbs.
Return to oven and cook without lid until top is brown and crisp.

 Serve with broccoli.

REFERENCES:

http://www.bushbeans.com/beaninfo/beanhealth.php

http://www.everynutrient.com/healthbenefitsofbeans.html

http://www.yourbestbodynow.com/articles/superfood-beans.html

Source:
1. BBC Food – Recipes – Sausage and butterbean casserole
2. Nutrisystem Reviews
3. Butter bean & tomato stew | BBC Good Food

Image Credit
ichef.bbci.co.uk

How to Make Tasty Flans

The secret of a good quiche, or as the common folks among us call it, flan, is all in using cheese and in the filling. For speed, you can buy and use ready made short crust pastry, though I make my own in double amounts and freeze half. If you want to do this, the pastry making is as follows: (The filling is the best, so I will save the best for last)

10 ounces of self raising flour (for one big flan or two medium)
2 ounces of margarine
Good pinch of salt
Cold water to bind.

METHOD: Chop the margarine into small lumps and drop it into your bowl of flour and salt. Rub the fat in with the fingertips, making sure you get a fine breadcrumb consistency. Add a little water, a few spoonfuls at a time, not too much or the pastry will be too hard, then mix to a dough.

YOUR CHEESY QUICHE MIXES: These are all based on making a roux sauce, which takes only a little time and allows for several variations. So let’s start by getting the pastry into a flan dish, then popping it in the fridge, while we make the filling. First, grease and flour a 10″ flan or quiche dish, then roll out the pastry as thin as you like it, but 1/6″ to 1/8″ is what I go for. Line the dish, pushing the pastry right up to all the edges, especially if your dish is fluted.

INGREDIENTS FOR FILLINGS: TUNA AND GREEN PEPPER

Medium can of tuna in brine, well drained
Small green pepper, deseeded and cut into half inch long slices
1/2 small onion, chopped coarsely
3-4 ounces of any hard cheese, grated (I like a mix of Gruyere and Cheddar)
2 ounces of flour
1/2 teaspoon of ready made English mustard
3/4 pint of milk
2 large fresh eggs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

METHOD: Melt the margarine in a medium saucepan, then cook the onion and pepper till soft, using a low heat. Mix in the flour, stirring continuously, then slowly add the milk, stirring till all the sauce thickens and has no lumps. Add mustard, salt and pepper, then stir in the grated cheese, keep stirring, keep heat low to medium. Combine the can of tuna into the sauce, and turn on the oven to Gas 6, (200C, 400F). Take the pan off the heat and beat in the eggs, one by one, till they are thoroughly absorbed. Pour into the pastry case you prepared earlier, and bake for 35-40 minutes till the top rises and becomes golden brown. Delicious hot or cold.

VARIATIONS OF FILLINGS: CHEESE AND ONION
Just up the cheese content to 6 ounces, make it a whole onion and use the same roux method and the eggs. Leave out the tuna and peppers of course.

BACON AND MUSHROOM: Cook small pieces of smoked bacon and about 6-8 medium mushrooms, plus the half onion grated. Do these in the margarine, then go on to follow the steps outlined for the first quiche, omitting the tuna and pepper.

SALMON AND BROCCOLI: Use a medium can of salmon in brine, and about 4 ounces of broccoli sprigs. Cook the vegetable with the onion in the margarine, then follow the steps of the mighty cheesey roux.

For all these fillings the roux method is the same, and the adding of eggs when you have removed your pan from the heat. They are all delicious, hot or cold and go well with salad and baked potatoes for a meal, or with rice and vegetables. With a buffet, these are a great hit, as they taste so good when cold, with potato salad and mayonnaise, or with tomato, sweetcorn or cucumber salads. In fact, these cheesy quiches FLANS, I say, flans! are so versatile, they go with anything. They are fine to freeze as well, but thaw before heating in the conventional oven. You have proteins, fat and carbohydrates, a touch of vegetables, and best of all, flavour at your fingertips.

Source:
1. Spanish Flan Recipe – Allrecipes.com
2. Cinnamon Linked to Lower Blood Sugar
3. How to Make easy Flan – YouTube

Image Credit
www.hungrymag.com

How to Make Black Eyed Bean Pie

As household finances become tighter, everyone is looking for healthy, cheap menus.  This recipe uses healthy black-eyed beans which are a cheap source of low-fat, high protein and carbohydrate.  Beans are extremely healthy being very low fat, very low in saturated fats that cause high blood pressure and heart disease.  In addition they are high in fiber, folate acid, vitamins and minerals including the Vitamin B complex, Vitamin C and K, manganese, iron, phosphorus and copper.  They are noted antioxidants that help to prevent cancan and are thought to be anti-aging.

As part of a weight-lose programme beans maintaining steady blood sugar levels giving a slow release of energy over a long period of time so one feels fuller for longer without consuming huge amounts of calories.  The high water-soluble fiber in beans helps to maintain a healthy bowel and reports suggests helps to lower cholesterol in the bloodstream. 

Experts recommend eating 3-4 cups of beans per week to get the optimum benefit from them. 

 In this recipe the flat-cap mushrooms and Soya sauce give it a beautifully rich brown colour that compliments the black-eyes beans very well.  Using cornflour instead of flour as a thickener ensures this is an especially low-calorie dish.   I much prefer to use a knob of butter to cream my potatoes for the topping but to opt for a lower calorie, lower fat content, and use skimmed milk instead.

 INGREDIENTS:  TO SERVE 2

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 small red onion

1-2 cloves of garlic as per your taste

4 large flat-cap mushrooms

¾ pint of vegetable stock

1 teaspoon mixed herbs

Dash soy sauce

4 ounces cooked black-eyed beans

Black pepper

1 tablespoon cornflour – mixed with small amount of water.

FOR THE TOPPING:

5 potatoes

Butter or skimmed milk for creaming potatoes

Black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS:

 Heat olive oil in a medium pan over a slow heat.

While you are waiting peel and chopped the onion.

One can monitor the heat of the oil by leaving one piece of onion in it.  When the onion starts to cook, add the rest of the onion.

Fry onion in the oil until it is almost transparent.

While that is cooking, crush clove or garlic.

Add garlic and cook for one minute only.

Prepare mushrooms by peeling top layer and chopping into medium sized chunks.  As they are ready add them to the pan, stir.

Cover the pan with a lid and ‘sweat’ the mix for 5 minutes, making such they don’t stick by stirring often.

Add stock, soy sauce and beans.

Bring to the boil.

Reduce heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes.

In a cup or small bowl, mix a tablespoon of cornflour with water to make a smooth paste.  Slowly, stirring all the time, add this to the mix until you have a thick sauce.

Transfer to an oven-proof casserole

Top with mashed potatoes

Cook under a hot grill until the top is brown and crispy. 

TO COOK THE TOPPING:

Peel and clean the potatoes.  Try to use firm potatoes such as Kerr’s Pinks or Maris Piper that will boil without breaking down.

Boil the potatoes with lightly salted water until the potatoes are soft when tested with a fork.

Remove from heat and drain.

Mash potatoes with a knob of butter or semi-skimmed milk as per your taste.

Season with black pepper, cream in until smooth.

Cream and use to top the mushroom and bean stew.

Serve with green vegetables and carrots.

Source:
1. Black-Eyed Pea Pie Recipe – Allrecipes.com
2. Cleveland Clinic Diet
3. How to make a Bean Pie – YouTube

Image Credit
www.toykrazy.com

How to Taste Wine

You’ve decided you want to learn how to taste wine. Something has piqued your interest but you’re not quite sure how to go about it. Well, you’ve got the first tool for wine tasting: curiosity. Once you’ve got that, everything else will fall into place. I could give you a whole book about how to taste wine, but that would make this article needlessly intimidating. I’ll try to simplify this as best as I can. tasting any beverage comes down to five things: sight, aroma, taste, mouth feel and appropriateness to style.

Before we go further, let’s talk glassware. There’s no need to worry about having exactly the right glass for each type of wine. For now, all you need is a decent sized tulip shaped glass. Serve your wine in clear glasses. colored glass won’t let you get a good look at your wine. Serve wine in clean glasses free of detergent residue. These residues get in the way of wine’s flavor.

First on our list of how to taste wine is sight. Grab your glass and fill it a third full. Hold the wine up against a white background and look at it for a moment. Look to see if the wine is clear. Is the wine’s color light for its style or dark? That could indicate young vs. mature wine. Now look at the surface of the wine, known as the disc. It should be bright, shiny and reflective, like a mirror. If the disc is flat or dull looking, assess it as a negative.

Before you go to assess that wine’s nose, make sure there’s nothing to distract you from the aroma. Try not to have odors like cooking or cigarette smoke floating through the room. Give your glass a vigorous swirl. This releases wine’s aroma into your glass. Bring the glass up to your nose and breathe deep. Make note of the aromas coming out of the glass. Is it subtle or intense? Does it smell of fruit? Or maybe there’s a hint of wood or spice. Don’t be too worried if you can’t come up with the words to describe those aromas right away. This will be a great excuse to get some practice.

Before we get to tasting the wine, I’d like to answer the question of whether or not to spit. That depends on how much wine you’ll be drinking. If you’re going to be tasting a lot of wine, then spit so you don’t get tipsy. If you’re only having a few glasses, don’t sweat it. Now draw a healthy sip of wine into your mouth. Move it over your tongue so you can get an impression of the wine’s body and flavor. Is the wine fairly thin, or is it full bodied? Is it rounded and sweet or is it dry? As with aroma, do you taste fruitiness, acidity, oakiness or something faintly leathery? Also just like aroma, practice makes perfect. The more you practice, the more readily you can identify different flavors.

Now we come to the final tool you need for wine tasting. Is the wine you just tasted appropriate to style? Basically, any wine has certain design parameters. This is how you can tell a pinot noir from a burgundy or champagne from zinfandel. This part does require a little product knowledge, but that’s an easy fix. Any decent liquor store should stock employees capable of telling you what to look for in a particular style of wine.
Well, that’s just about it. This

may sound like a lot to soak in, but don’t let it worry you. Above all, wine tasting should be fun. So don’t be afraid to experiment. Have some friends over, serve some food and just have a good time. Over time, as you get some practice, your brain will become more knowledgeable and your tongue more educated. Before you know it, you’ll be asking fewer questions of your liquor store and will be answering them yourself. So go to it and just have some fun.

Source:
1. Wine tasting
2. Butter vs. Margarine: Which is Better
3. How To Taste Wine – Wine Tasting Tips from Wine Enthusiast …

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api.ning.com