If there’s one thing that’s synonymous with the Tuscan region of Italy it’s the wine. Whether you’re an aficionado, you’d like to be, or even if you just plain enjoy a tipple, this gorgeous area offers a wealth of opportunities to sample the iconic local vino. |
One of the best ways to ensure you make the most of every moment is to head off on one of the dedicated Tuscany wine tours. From Florence, you’ll be taken out into the beautiful countryside to visit a selection of vineyards to sample the local product at the source. If you’re a novice when it comes to the ins and outs of the etiquette, the following tips on how to taste like a pro might come in very handy!
Top Tips to Taste Like a Pro
If you choose a reputable company to take you on your Tuscany wine tours from Florence you’ll be accompanied by a local guide who’ll be able to share their wealth of knowledge, but these tips will give you a bit of a head start.
Get a Visual
This is something in which you use all of your senses, the very first being your eyes. Hold the glass up to the light and have a hard look at the contents, focusing on the viscosity (also known as the ‘legs’), the colour and the opacity. The term ‘legs’ refers to the streaks left on the inside of the glass after you’ve swirled it around a little – generally, the more legs, the higher the alcohol content.
Use your Nose
The next sense to use is your smell – and it may well help to close your eyes at this step in order to really concentrate. When you smell, consider whether you can detect any kind of citrus, orchard or tropical fruits. Other things to look out for are aromas of herbs or floral scents. On a deeper level you might be able to identify notes of things like grass, leaves, tobacco, cedar, vanilla, oak or even leather. No matter what you think you can smell, keep a mental note and you may be surprised how easy it can be to sound like a pro simply by following your instinct.
Take a Taste
It doesn’t take long to get to the fun part! The first thing to remember is that you’re aiming to really get a feel for the flavours, so you need to keep the liquid in your mouth and allow it to coat your tongue and all the taste buds, rather than swallow it straight down. In fact you’re looking for three things here: the taste (sweet, bitter, salty); the texture (related to the tannins and alcohol content); and the length (how it tastes at the beginning, middle and end as it passes over your palate and how long it takes to do this).
Make a Conclusion
With all the information you’ve gleaned from looking, smelling and tasting the lovely vino, it then comes time to make some kind of conclusion from your findings. Have a think about any characteristics that stand out, how it made you feel (memorable or ‘meh’) and aspects like its acidity or the balance of flavours. While it can be daunting for anyone inexperienced to try to speak with confidence about their findings, the only way you’ll learn is by experience – so don’t be shy.
Become an Expert on Tuscany Wine Tours from Florence
We’re joking of course, because you can’t become an overnight expert on this multifaceted and complex art, but you can get a pretty good start on one of the excellent Tuscany wine tours. From Florence you can visit a huge selection of the region’s vineyards and get a genuine (and very delicious) insight into why it’s one of Europe’s most acclaimed wine producing areas.
Mauro Bramante is the Director of WalkAbout Florence, an independent business offering unforgettable tours and excursions around Italy including the best Tuscany wine tours from Florence. Whether you want to ride a Vintage Vespa, try the famous Chianti wine or get cooking with fresh local ingredients, Mauro's company promises excitement, adventure and above all, fun. If you're keen to experience the magic of Italy with the help of some passionate and knowledgeable tour guides, look no further than WalkAbout Florence for your next getaway.
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