If you are a wine connoisseur then wherever you are visiting, wine tour may well be the food and drink experience for you. However, other than sampling fine wines, it could something you’ve not done before.
As such, we’ve put together a guide of what to expect when going on a wine tour. Including how to prepare for the day and some tips to help get you in the mood.
What to Expect on a Wine Tour
Firstly, many of our wine tours visit a fully operational winery. Where you will see the vineyards themselves, along with various wine being produced. During which there will be a wine tasting session, with various selections that the tour offers.
However, there is certainly more to the experience than simply turning up and drinking several glasses of wine.
It is a very complex operation that everyone will need to understand if they plan to take a full wine tour. Therefore, take a look at the following information and get ready to enjoy your chosen wine tour to the fullest.
Consider what to wear
You do really need to dress accordingly and feel as comfortable as you can. After all, remember you will be walking up and down the vineyard, often across rough terrain to see where the grapes are picked. While most wine tours are fairly informal, quite a few wineries nowadays may have a formal dress code. Therefore, it’s always best to read the small print or send and enquiry when booking.
Although, whatever you decide to wear, remember possible red wine spills won’t be easy to remove from any white outfits!
Do consider your budget
There is often a tendency to overspend on wine tours, mainly due to the many choices available. Initially, they may not appear to be very expensive, however, you should always set a budget. As while you may have pre-booked the wine tour, you may not have anticipated buying as much in the shop! If you’re unsure how much to spend on a decent wine, consider £10 a bottle a good starting point.
Ensure you ask plenty of questions
You have come onto the tour because you are interested in the wine-making process, so go prepared with any questions you might have. You could ask the winemaker(s) about the age and history of the vineyard? Find out if it’s a family-run business, how many different barrels are produced, or why they chose to grow a particular grape. The answers will be very interesting and help you understand the importance of the pressing process. Also, do ask them about the temperatures of specific wines.
Some other questions to consider could be regarding their choice of grapes, what sorts of casks are used and how does that impact flavours. It may be you wish to know which are the top wine regions. Alternatively, you may be interested in the differences between a table wine or a session wine.
It may seem as though you are asking too many questions, but it is actually very welcome. Most winemakers enjoy answering questions and explaining the differences between their own wines and that of the competition.
Do hold the glass correctly
It is actually, very important to hold the wine glass correctly. You will need to delicately hold the stem of the glass. This will prevent fingerprints making a grimy mess on the super clean glass. Before you take a sip, hold the stem firmly and swirl the wine around slightly, this helps to increase the oxygen to breathe, which enhances the flavour.
Watch the wine you choose to sample
Do start off slowly, and begin with a lighter wine before moving on to richer, darker selections. The darker the wine is, the older and more intense it will be. Try to start your sampling with dry and sweet white wines. Probably near the end of your tour, you will sample some dessert wines.
Ensure you use all your senses
It is not all about your palate whilst enjoying tasting wine, you need to always smell the wine before the sampling. This helps you to become accustomed to the type of smell and strength of the wine.
Using the Spittoon
If you prefer not to actually swallow the wine you have just sampled, you can spit it out in a spittoon. This is not an embarrassing action, but an old custom, with a funnel at the top of the spittoon to make it easier.
Do drink water and wash your glass
Drinking large amounts of wine can cause dehydration, and most tours supply water to help ensure you do not become parched. Drinking water after wine-tasting will help to prevent this occurring. It is also a good idea to frequently wash your glass properly to prevent flavours from mixing with each other.
Wine Tours and Wine Tasting with tabl.
Book your own wine tours with tabl.com, where we have a wide range of wine tours and tasting sessions available. Including some of the most popular wine destinations across the world.