Learn how to taste wine like a sommelier with these simple tips from Eric Pool, owner of Berryville Vineyards in Claremont, Illinois.


“When I’m tasting wine, I remember the five S’s,” says Pool

See the wine.

It should be clear, and if it’s red, have a very deep color. The darker the better, Pool says.

Swirl the wine.

Swirling releases the bouquet.

Smell the wine.

Smelling allows you to capture the flavor with your nose as well as your tongue.

Sip the wine.

Let it sit on the top of your tongue to suck the air through it. It helps the wine to get more air through it.


Tilt your head back and let it run down your throat.

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how to taste wineThe temperature of wine should be close to that of the underground temperature, Pool adds.

“I have a geothermal temp in my winery,” he says. “Ideally, you want low 60s. All chemical reactions occur slower at a cooler temperature. The idea is to keep the cork wet, so I keep the wine stored upside down in transport, then I sit it on its side to store it. Wine likes a constant temperature.”

That constant temperature is more important than the actual serving temperature, Pool says.


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  1. One of my friends is getting married next year, and she wants her bachelorette party to be very classy. I think a wine tasting party would fit her tastes since she likes the finer things in life, which includes good tasting wine. Thanks for the tip that I should swirl the wine during that event so that I can release the bouquet, so I’ll be sure to do that.


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