Do you like tasting different wines? Would you like to be able to remember which ones you liked? If your answer to both questions is yes, then you’ll probably want to add a mat to your next wine tasting experience. Whether it’s a social gathering, a professional event, or you’re simply at home, a tasting mat is extremely useful to help you remember those wines you loved the most and why.
A tasting mat may be as simple or as complex as the occasion and participants require. However, it should always include basic sections to write down entries about the wine’s look, smell, taste, and other information you may wish to record; these sections correlate with the tasting process order. Now let’s break down the sections that your wine tasting mat should include.
The Look Section:
The look section on the mat usually has options to tell how intense or opaque the wine is, its proper color, and its viscosity. Therefore, after careful examining your glass, you’re ready to fill this part out. If you’re interested in collecting wine, then this section will be very important to you because a wine’s color can signal its potential to cellar.
The Smell Section:
Once you have defined its look properties, you’re ready for the next step: the aroma appreciation. In the smell section of a tasting mat, you will be able to log those fragrances you were able to identify. Always remember to swirl the wine in the glass before smelling it to increase the surface area exposure to the air.
The Taste Section:
After scrutinizing the wine’s visual and aromatic features, you’re ready to fill out the taste section of your mat. These in-mouth sensations are recorded to help you remember your perceptions about the wine’s sweetness, acidity, fruits, and body. It’s recommended to take any additional notes you may consider important in helping you recalling why you liked or disliked about a particular wine.
The Information Section:
Regardless of the design, every tasting mat should include an information section. After all, the objective is to easily identify those wines we loved. This section on your mat usually lets you record information about the wine’s name, producer, and variety.
The process of taking notes on a tasting mat should be simple and straightforward, therefore almost every section in a mat includes simple line graphs or scales with specified options to ease the process. These mats should also help the taster maintain an unified measurement criteria throughout the entire process. For example, the mat may have a four-step scale to mark where the wine’s smell intensity lies, or a list of colors to circle the right one. We also recommend including a simplified system to better express your experience. It may be as simple as deciding whether you’ll drink the wine again or not.
Now it’s time to put everything in practice. Are you ready to start using your tasting mat like a pro?