Latest dating trend: the Grape Vine Social

Become a wine buff and bag a man, all in one night

The latest dating trend to hit the singles’ market? The Grape Vine Social.

Combining two of our favourite things – that’s wine and men, by the way – the Grape Vine Social gives singletons the chance to learn a little more about wine and mingle with like-minded (and, most importantly, single) folk during the same evening.

With wines provided by Chamarre and events taking place at swish locations around London, this is the sophisticated way to land yourself a man.

Log onto www.grapevinesocial.com for dates and locations.

In the meantime, for total wine dunces, follow Chamarre’s easy, bluffers’ guide to wine tasting:

Step one: Look at it!

So you have the wine. Now what?
It’s not a glass of beer or alcopop bottle, so start by holding the wine glass by the stem – so you can get a good look at the wine in your glass.

Ideally you’d be able to tip the wine away from you against a white background, but if you’re in the local bar then chances are it’s not going to happen! So instead hold it up to eye level and take a good look at it.

You should be able to work out fairly easily if you’re dealing with a white, rosé or red from the colour of the wine. White wines will vary from almost clear, to lemon or even gold in colour (the older it generally is). A rosé wine will be pinky or orange, while a red wine can vary from being pale red to a deep brown red or purple.

Step two: Sniff it!
As the majority (around 75%) of what we taste is actually due to our sense of smell, once you’ve looked at it, have a sniff.

To get a good whiff of the wine, swirl the wine in the glass, (gently so you don’t cover yourself or anyone else in it!). Swirling releases molecules in the wine, allowing you to smell the wines aroma (also called the bouquet or nose of the wine). The technical reason being, that it increases the surface area of the wine exposed to air…but enough of the technicalities.

Take a quick sniff of the wine and have a think about what comes to mind. Roses, spices, wood, nuts, chocolate, gooseberries, smelly feet etc. As you get more practice, you’ll start to notice characteristic aromas from different wines. As an additional tip, younger wines tend to smell more of fruit, while older wines are likely to smell more spicy or savoury. Don’t worry, it gets easier with practice – good news for all of us!

Step three: Taste it!
Finally for the best bit – taste it! Start by taking a medium mouthful (rather than a huge gulp) of wine and give it a quick swirl around your mouth to give all your taste buds a good chance to try it too. Have a think about: Initial taste – what comes to mind from your first impressions. Is it a light or heavy wine. Is dry or sweet, smooth or harsh? Aftertaste – How long did the taste linger? What was the overall flavour like?

Most importantly… do you like the wine? The most important qualification of a good wine is whether you and your friends enjoy it, and if it ticks this box, it’s sure to be a winner.

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