even though wine tasting and aroma perception is such a personal experience, I have come to realise that if you are going to talk about wine with your friends, there has to be some kind of common ground so that you can understand each other.
understanding the aroma profile of a grape variety also helps us identify the grape variety and possibly its region of origin when we taste blind. it also helps us assess its quality in relation to its typicity and complexity. it even give us clues about the way it was crafted in the winery and for how long it has aged and for how long it can keep.
since aromas and flavours are so important and the subject of so much poetry, I have designed here a taste profile table (click here - in pdf) to help us understand those flavours in relation to the various grape varieties we can find inside his glass.
to study my diploma, I am now using several great tools and books and my goal in putting together my taste profile table was to combine and simplify the information I found on those various tools. I can now carry this simple 2-page table wherever I go for tasting and use it to juggle my memory and strengthen my knowledge about each wines I drink. here, for a limited time only, you can have it for free if you promise to quote me if you use it in your classroom.
the information to build this table was sourced from oz clarke’s book “grape & wines”, an excellent encyclopedia listing all grape varieties with very thorough descriptions and details about each. I also used pierre casamayor’s book “how to taste wine”, a very good work on this subject, full of tasting exercises and tables to simplify the voodoo of wine tasting.
other than these 2 books, the best tools I found for me to structure and memorise my knowledge of each grape varieties and respective components, including aromas are the “nez du vin” aroma kit which I previously talked about in these pages and de long’s wine grape varietal table.
neatly organised in rows and columns, de long’s table maps out each varieties by levels of acidity and body. each grape is in turn succinctly described in terms of character, country and wines in which you can find them and those description are colored according to their skin color of course but also shaded according to their body. the deluxe edition is accompanied with a great pocket-size reference book listing alphabetically each grapes so that you can quickly find out their color, body, and acidity, but it also list all wines of the world so that you can, at a glance, read which grapes are in them. a great study tool and reference to understand grapes.