Want to become a wine connoisseur?

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With The 20th National Cool Climate Wine Show being held on the 16th – 19th October, your opportunity to taste some of Australia’s premier cool climate wines is fast approaching . Becoming a wine connoisseur and having the ability to differentiate between the taste, look and smell of the 800 wines on offer can seem both scary and daunting.   To point you in the right direction, Russell Cody from McWilliams Wines has shed some insight into the top 20 things to look for when tasting wine. Russell has been a valuable judge of the wine show for many years and gives us simple and easy things to look for before the evening gets the better of you…


Lets go!

1. What food would the wine partner well with?                    


2. What one of my friends or relations would equally enjoy this wine?


3. How long would the wine last for in my cellar…. If I can keep my hands off it!!


4. What weather would this wine be drunk in e.g. On a hot day- icy cold is best


5. What glass would the wine taste best in


6. Would the wine win a medal at a show and what would the medal be? God, Silver or Bronze


7. Does the wine have balance in the palate e.g. the acid, tannin and structure are all in harmony


8. Does the wine have a taste fault e.g. Microbial or to acidic?

9. Would I go for another glass of the wine

10. What region or country do I think the wine comes from?

11. Is there oak in the wine and if so what type of oak?

12. Is there residual sugar in the wine and if so is it in harmony with the wine?


13. Is the wine too cold or too hot in temperature, as some wines are at their best at different temperatures  


14. If it’s a sparkling wine, does the bubble still stay in the wine for a long time or does it dissipate quickly?


15.What alcohol level do I think is in the wine?


16.  How long after opening the wine will it last?


17. Does the wine remind me of a wine I have tasted before?


18.  Does the wine have a smell fault e.g. Can smell pongy or mouldy


19. Does the colour (or hue) of the wine tell me that the wine should be young or old, or it may be oxidised if the wine is showing some brown colours

20. How much would I be prepared to pay for the wine per bottle?