You and your wine glass

You and your wine glass, face to face.

Just you and the glass. You and it.

You may be surrounded by a lot of people because you're in the middle of a celebration.

You may be alone in your living room.

It doesn't matter. Right now, all your attention is on your glass. It's the only thing that matters to you.

Look at it.

It's true. You've probably already been told that it's the visual appearance that counts. That visual perception plays a fundamental role in wine appreciation. That this is the first sensation that the wine consumer receives.

And you'll realise this because, the longer you look at it, the greater your desire to taste it.

Because, when you tilt the glass and you observe the place where the wine impacts against the glass, you'll note that the wine is clean. Bright and clear. It is neither cloudy nor dull.

Because its cherry red colour is intense and deep.

You tilt the glass, moving your wrist in a circular motion, observing how the wine swirls over the walls of the glass and, as it falls downwards, it appears to form thick tears. "This is partly due to its alcohol content. The higher the content, the lower the fluidity". It resounds in your mind. You've heard this somewhere before.

Your instinct prompts you to smell it. To discover its aromas before tasting it.

With the glass still, without shaking it, smell the wine at a certain distance and progressively bring it closer to your nose. You capture the aromas that are most likely to leave the wine, to move into the empty space of the glass, upward towards your nose. These are the most volatile and fragile aromas.

Almost without realising it, you start to swirl your glass, moving the wine and causing new aromas to appear. Those aromas are less volatile and need to be "pulled out of" the wine by swirling it in order to smell them.

You don't know whether they are aromas from the grapes or whether they are the result of alcoholic fermentation or wine ageing. What you do know is that they are intense aromas that convey a feeling of elegance, finesse and harmony. Aromas that bring to mind some type of fruit. But not unripe fruit. Not an apple. Red berries perhaps.

"The time's come. At last!"

Almost trembling with emotion, you lift the glass to your lips.

You feel how the wine enters your mouth.

Given that the flavours are perceived on different parts of your tongue, the first thing you'll note is its sweetness, captured by the tip of your tongue. You will quickly stop perceiving this and will note the acidity and a certain saltiness, which are more persistent and give way to a slightly bitter taste, which persists once the wine has been ingested. You will also note a slight astringency produced by the tannins. But it all happens so quickly that you need to take another sip of wine and hold it in your mouth for long enough and with even greater concentration in order to appreciate it.

And, when you do so, you'll realise that no flavour stands out over the rest. That you're looking at a round, balanced wine, with a pleasant flavour that remains after ingestion.

And this all this has taken place in less than a minute.

You can now get back to the party, to your evening meal or relax on the sofa again.