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Blind Wine Tasting Party

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Published December 22nd 2009
Want a fun way to enjoy a number of different wines with your friends? Hold a blind wine tasting party.

Guests taste different wines while blind-folded and prepare tasting notes describing the wine. The person who most accurately describes each wine wins a prize.

It's a great idea for rainy evenings and lazy afternoons. Hare a few easy steps to ensure it all runs smoothly:

1. Decide on a theme for your blind tasting party. Themes can be matched to varying levels of wine knowledge:

Hard: For guests who are sophisticated drinkers and really know their wine, choose wines from the one region eg The Yarra, the Barossa Valley.

Moderate: For those who have a moderate understanding of different wines, choose wines from different regions in a state eg. Hunter Valley, Mudgee and the Riverina.

Easy: For those with a basic knowledge of wine.
Different types of red wine eg. Merlot, Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon. This will be most people.

2. Invite between five and ten friends and ask each of them to bring a couple of glasses and a bottle of wine.

3. Lay out the glasses in front of each person. The host tells everyone to put on their blind-folds while small glasses are poured.

4. The host hides the wine and the guests take off their blind-folds to eye the wine, swirl it, sniff it and taste it. You can expect real winos to make gurgling noises and spit the wine out in a bucket afterward.

5. Ask each person to write down tasting notes for the wine. These will be unique to the theme you chose:

Hard: Expect these guys to use descriptive words and phrases like “earthy”, “sharp”, “strong floral tones”, “vintage” etc. The accuracy of these can be judged by looking at the wine label afterward.

Moderate: Guests should try and guess which region the wine is from.

Easy: Ask guests to make a couple of notes about the type of wine.

6. Repeat steps 3-5 for each wine.

7. The person who is most accurate in describing the wines wins.

The prize: a bottle of wine of course!

Tip: To intensify the experience try matching cheeses to your wine which can be nibbled on between each tasting.
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Why? Because you don't need to go to a winery to go wine tasting.
When: Anytime
Where: Your house
Cost: Depends on the bottle of wine
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