Winter Wine Tasting Ideas

Are you tired of the cold and struggling to find something to do? Depending on where you live, all of your outdoor outlets may be on hold for a bit as endless amounts of snow keep piling on your neighborhood. 

If you’ve watched every movie you’ve wanted to see, searched to the end of the Internet, don’t feel like reading another book, have begun watching reruns of old TV shows or reality television, can’t play another board game, or have cranked up you’re iPod and danced it out already…take a deep breath and shake off the winter blues with a nice winter wine tasting party with friends.

Choose A Theme

Horizontal Tasting (credit: thebarrelroom.com)

In a horizontal tasting, you’ll compare one varietal from the same vintage across several wineries. Grab a glass Sauvignon Blanc from one producer, and taste it next to another winery produced in the same year. How do these wines of the same vintage differ? How does each wine’s region, vineyard and winemaking style impact the flavor of its varietal?

Travel The Boot

Discover Italian wine and some great varietals from multiple regions in Italy. Start with a dry white wine like Soave from Veneto, then make your way to Abruzzo for some Montepulciano. You can then visit Puglia and sample the Primitivo, before heading to Sicily for some Nero d’Avola. Make your way back up through Campania/Naples for a little Taurasi, and finally end with Piedmont for either Nebbiolo, Barbaresco, or Barbera. Ciao!

Indoor Picnic

Few things are more relaxing than a leisurely picnic in the park. Create a little picnic scene in your living room, get in the mindset of the great outdoors and clear skies, then whip up some delicious food to pair with wine. Some ideas include Salami & Cheese (Brie or Manchego) on a French Baguette with Chardonnay or perhaps Merlot…little roast beef sandwiches with Cabernet Sauvignon…chicken salad with Pinot Grigio…or deviled eggs with Prosecco.

Around the World (credit: thebarrelroom.com)

Add a twist to a regional theme by tasting one specific varietal, such as Syrah/Shiraz, from different wine regions. For example, compare the distinct flavors of a Syrah from California and a Shiraz from Australia. How does one brand or region differ from the other? How does each wine’s region impact its flavor?

Sparkling Wine Party (credit: celebrations.com)

A Sparkling wine tasting party is a chic occasion idea for those who’ve gone through the roster of typical red and white sips and swirls. Any time a bottle of bubbly is served at a party the elegance jumps a bit and the atmosphere feels more festive. Grab a white table cloth to cover your table, grab six bottles of sparkling wine, turn the bottle labels away, and begin sipping and sharing notes. Here is a link to a robust list of sparkling wine terms you can reference: Sparkle Me

There are some many directions you can go to make your wine event a fun one. Create your own theme, raise a glass, and have a good time.


Hello Vino