ART & CULTURE –

A GUIDE TO WINE TASTING

BY CASSIE M @WINEPOSTER

Have you ever been in a situation where someone who professes to know a lot about wine suddenly stands up by the dinner table, elegantly swirls their glass, takes a sniff and over-shares everything from the fruity aromas, structure of the specific tannins and ageing possibilities to the name of the specific vineyard? Should you also consider taking your wine analysing skills to the next level? To understand what your friend is babbling about, yes probably, but also to have a greater appreciation of what kind of wine you like yourself. Describing your likes and dislikes to a wine vendor helps a lot when you don’t want to spend money on a wine from the shelf that you perhaps won’t enjoy later. Any professional vendor will gladly help you with your purchase so you can obtain the best value. Here is an easy guide to how you can become more skilled at wine tasting… Start by fetching a pen and paper to take notes. Pour some wine in a glass, not too much as you would like to swirl the glass without potentially spilling any of it. Then sniff the wine before the first swirl. What can you smell at this point? First, you want to check for any faults – aromas that you don’t want in your wine. It’s not all that common but this could include wet cardboard or mould indicating that a bacteria called Trichloroanisole (“TCA”) has found its way into your bottle via the cork or maybe through a contaminated barrel. This is what we call a “corked” wine. A common mistake people make is saying a wine is corked when there are bits of the actual cork in the poured wine glass. Next step… swirl. Give the wine some air and let it breath, and more aromas will be released, making it easier for you to sense them. Then analyse and concentrate, and think deeply about what you really are actually smelling. Let’s take red wine as an example. Possible fruit suggestions: raspberry, strawberry, cherry, plum, blackberry, etc. If the wine is aged well you might also note dried fruits such as figs, prune or raisins.

If it is barrel-aged (in wood) you might also pick up some vanilla, oak, smoke, cedar or even coconut, depending on the style of barrel used. From the wine’s ageing you could also note aromas such as dried fruits, leather, earth, tar, tobacco, farmyard or wet leaves. Now, finally the tasting. Take a sip and swish it around in your mouth, hitting the whole part of your tongue and mouth. Five seconds is ideal. Swallow or spit – your choice. – but don’t forget to analyse while the wine is in your mouth. See if you can find the same notes from your palate (tasting) as from your nose (smelling). You might note that the taste and smell vary as the wine changes temperature, and also after swirling. Great – the more aromas you find, the more complex the wine is. Search for other elements in the wine, such as sugar/dryness, acidity, tannins and alcohol. Analyse, swirl and taste again. Repeat these steps on a regular basis and you will find it quite fun as you develop your wine tasting skills quickly. And who knows: the next time some one launches into their wine tasting lingo at a party, you will be able to know what they are talking about. Wine tasting and analysing wines is the perfect way to get to know someone on a date, after work, or as a relaxing and fun group activity. I host several different events that include teaching, blind tasting and guidance through the steps mentioned above, so you will be an ace at this in no time.

Vinoteca Barolo Urb. Doña Lola, Local 23-24 Calahonda (Mijas Costa) Reservations: (+34) 666 324 214 info@vinotecabarolo.com

NOVOCUADRO ART COMPANY SHOWCASES THE BEAUTY OF SIMPLICITY IN MILAN

A special exhibition entitled “Mediterranean Essence” was presented by No vocuadro Art Company in conjunction with this year’s Salone del Mobile in Milan. On show at the new headquarters of the Cervantes Institute in Milan city centre, the collection consisted of a compilation of six original artworks by Jaime Jurado. It was organised by ICEX and curated by the design mag azine Elle Decor Italia in collaboration with the DWA Design Studio (Alberto Artesani and Frederik De Wachter). According to Novocuadro, the exhibition was created to define the beauty of simplicity. “It is pristine and innovative, a collection that focuses on the essence of visual well-being, dominated by rich and delicate textures and where pure lines are mixed with curved and organic shapes. We selected and curated these unique forms for their ability to simplify and provide se renity and balance to each room. “Following the guidelines of minimalism that emerged in the 1960s in the Unit ed States, in this selection of original artworks, the repetition of geometric shapes can be observed at work in its harmonious ability, striving to achieve an elegant and clean space without overloading it. In this case, the artist

During a visit to the exhibition, renowned interior designer Patricia Urquiola (featured here in the green shirt) chatted with Novocuadro artist Jaime Jurado.

Jaime Jurado uses greys, whites and blacks as protagonists upon a neutral chromatic base, in order to get to the central vision of his art.” Novocuadro Art Company is a turn of the century business originally found ed in Spain and dedicated to the international distribution of original art works. The company supplies specialised art and site-specific decoration to department stores, architects, designers and interior designers on a global scale. “We constantly endeavour to be up to date on the latest trends. Our art works are always handmade, with a particular aim to create different styles for unique environments and turning each corner into a celebration of colour and space.”

Novocuadro Art Company Ctra. de Mijas, 22, Edif. La Calerita L-3, Fuengirola Tel. (+34) 952 662 791 info@novocuadro.com www.novocuadro.com

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