Recently I ran a wine tasting as a fundraiser for a group of people. We decided the the aim would be to learn about each varietal, learn a little about how to appraise each wine and to try the wines with food tasters which helped enhanced the taste profile of each wine.
I called it the Super Six because the wine is sourced from local supermarkets. I specifically chose for this event the New World Wine Awards wines, all under $20. The idea was that people would try something “good” that they may not have tried and to educate guests about the wines they stock in supermarkets. These wines are accessible to most people both in terms of cost and convenience. Often, however, the wide variety available can sometimes be daunting, people tend to go for the same ones all the time.
I’m passionate about NZ wine. I love showing our delicious wines off and helping people to assess for themselves what they enjoy in a wine. Sometimes people have tried a specific varietal and because it’s unfamiliar or not good they don’t try that varietal again.
So here’s how the event worked:
I made tasting sheets, written across the top was the varietal and each specific wine. Down the side were the steps to appraising wine eg: Appearance, nose, flavour, finish. I have put together these sheets from “Wine Folly” resources and my training with WSET. I customise them and when we are done people have something to take home or to the supermarket!
We followed the appraisal steps with each wine. I talked a little about what guests might expect to see/smell/taste in each varietal and we recorded what we thought on the sheets. I encouraged guests to judge the wines for themselves and we discussed it. We also made tasting plates and asked guest to try the wine before a specific bite then after and note what difference that makes. I like to share my knowledge of wine regions and terroir as I note this is becoming a more and more significant factor in world wine. Makers are keen to have their wines exhibit the characteristics of the land the grapes were grown on. If it’s appropriate I love to get into the wine making process for each varietal.
Each pour is about 50 ml and we try 6 wines so it’s a good idea to eat food first. At the end we usually chat about what was good and people are generally keen to share their experiences and wine adventures. There’s usually lots of laughs and new bonds.
For Fundraising events we negotiate a ticket price per person for the event which the organisers collect and pay me before the event as I need to purchase the food and wines. I have glasses and tasting plates; I make appraisal sheets; print resources and wine notes for the tables and individuals. The venue, format of the event, wines and what people specifically want from the event can all be discussed.
Other events can be in people’s homes, at my place or specific venues. The price depends on what the organiser want from the event. For example: older or more prestigious wines cost more. Its all negotiable.
The Super Six has been described as Wine 101. The basics and it is a lot of fun.