Tuesday’s Tasting Tips & Techniques (TTT&T): Detergent Interference

A regular reader asked if I would discuss how to taste wine, since some of my readers know they like wine, but they have no interest in taking a wine class while still wanting a better understanding about the wine they’re drinking.  The request made sense to me…so, in an attempt to help those of you who are wine novices have some insight into my style and to give those of you who are wine aficionados a little refresher, I thought I’d introduce “Tuesday’s Tasting Tips & Techniques.”  These won’t be long posts, so if I don’t explain something in enough detail, just ask for more information.

Today’s topic—detergent and your wine glass. 

First, use a scentless detergent.  This is a really important because not only can scented detergent throw off your whole tasting experience by masking the honey taste in your chardonnay with the lemon scent of the detergent, for example, but also it can be downright disgusting (and confusing) when you detect lemon aromas to your cabernet sauvignon.

Second, wipe the inside of your wine glass with a clean lint-free cloth (like a cloth napkin or dishtowel) before pouring the first glass.  Detergent leaves residue on the inside of your glass, which, in any wine, can interfere with the actual tasting experience, and, in sparkling wine, can interfere with the way the bubbles rise to the top of your glass.  By wiping the inside of the glass before it is used, you remove the residue and avoid potential problems.

Cheers!

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