An industrial engineer with a degree from Georgia Tech and the owner of the "Wine Hours" organization. My name is Jenny@winehours.com. After graduation, I began working for a few startups until I joined Telecommunication multinational corporation in Singapore. After a long day of work, my colleagues, former boss, and I made it a tradition to grab a bottle of wine. Before too long, I started to recognize the value of wine, which made the event special and seemed to connect our group of friends together. My former boss is a wine enthusiast, so she and I began searching for new brands of wine. In 2006, we went to Napa for a wine tour, visiting vineyards and wineries, and we even travelled together to New Zealand when both of us lived in Singapore, to visit a select few wineries.
Although there are thousands of different types of wines, there are a few key elements to include in the wine experience that will make the wine drinking much more enjoyable. I believe in drinking wine is more than simply consuming a beverage; it's an entire experience. I experience when I drink it slowly, I unconsciously easily start a conversation that carries late into the night, that goes long. Wine, as part of our daily meetup, facilitated intimate conversations about work pressures, family and friends, and, of course, gossip.
This was when I started to realize I fell in love with wine. There are stages to know wine. It is a learning curve. We will learn about the different components of wine such as body, finish, and flavor intensity in different times and perhaps even in hours and minutes. The experience of wine tasting is significant different and you'll be able to find the perfect wine for you.
I drank wine primarily out of pleasure. As a beginner, I began by tasting mass market price points of different varietals i.e. shiraz, merlot, cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay and sauvignon blanc and blends of red and white. Mass market wine definition is mass production, cheaper in price and it has a less complexity of body, finish, and flavor intensity perhaps feels like watery and/or diluted in mouthfeel.
This was the time I started to drink and like to drink during free night time. When I was relocated to the United States in 2008, obviously more accessible to wineries and vineyards, I attempted to try more wines from different producers, different price points, and different states and/or regions, all enhancing my understanding of the nature and taste of wine. I started to learn and to know my palate preferred - what wines body, finish and the flavor intensity I liked more. I remembered I frequent searched for full body red wine, and I defined full body as in, attack at first taste and has a lot of spice in mouthfeel. Slowly transition to unsure palate and to be defined. Certainly, yet to know what is fine wine means, i.e. complex but balance of acidity, tannin, finish and flavor intensity.
When I moved to Silicon Valley in 2010, the same habits for wine meet ups continued. Co-workers and I frequently met for drinks on Fridays after work. On the weekends, we planned for Napa and/or Sonoma wine tour tastings. Occasionally, we joined free wine tastings by wine cellar and/or "meet up" events. I treasured the experience of learning more about wine and connected to new friends in our events. I enjoyed every single wine experience.
I began yet another wine journey as I officially joined the Napa wineries as a wine club member. As a club member, I am eligible to bring total of four members (friends and/or family) for free wine tastings. This has led to improved friendships, as we were spending a great deal of time together, sharing conversations and interesting experiences. I really love it. A few wineries I visited are Girard Winery in Yountville, Silverado Vineyards in Silverado Trail, Napa, Alpha Omega, Provenance, Beringer, Joseph Phelps Winery in St. Helena, and Opus One winery in Oakville. I have recently become a club member at some of these wineries.
Various tour tastings, I immediately realized that my palate had changed. Most notably, I used to like shiraz, a red wine which has a lot of spices and its "full body" like most Australian red wines, but have since switched to prefer red cabernet from California. I visited the wineries in the Napa Valley area routinely and was inspired by the beautiful scenic and vineyard experience it had to offer. I experienced the diversity of wine the region had to offer, talking to sommeliers and professional wine makers about their services and products, each yielding a different wine experience. Of everything, the most rewarding aspect of a winery or vineyard tour is the visit to the cellar. I discover full experience tasting in a complete experience. Different value will bring you different feelings and thus it gives you a different experience. And it depends on you, you may conclude it is worth value or it is not. And those who choose to proceed and likely will become a wine lover like "me", and some may be just one time to know.
My wine journey has been started. I have enjoyed many bottles of wine, which has been a blessed, but I have always known that I must be wise how much I consume. As I have grown older, so have my tastes in wine, switching from mass market consumption to mid and premium wines. I have also learned a few steps prior to picking a bottle to purchase. First, I have learned how to serve the wine i.e. how to open the wine bottle, to serve in the proper temperature, to use the right glass, and to pour the right amount. Second, to taste the wine; we will need to get a good recommendation from the expert prior to choose the wine and if it is ok to request to pour 1-2 ounces red wine to taste what you prefer before deciding on a full glass. Then to experience the aroma and taste the wine. Third, to drink the wine; to sip the wine, to pair wine with proper food and to switch the wine with different varietal of white and/or red blends. This is part of a transition of mass production wine, fast and full glass taste to medium and to slow and low consumption wine taste.
My best friend, it is wine. wine has become my friend at night, as I drink a glass slowly and sip the wine. It gives me different feelings when I have different moods. I could even name "the emotion" differently and could think and perceive how time passed differently. I feel that wine has helped me calm down and I feel engaged and passionate about its taste. My experience has made me curious to know more about how wines are different, is it because of viticulture or vinification? It has puzzled me a lot.
"The wine bible book has helped me to understand more about wine matters, what is about wine that I hold so deeply? What is the endless attachment?" The wisdom should come in priority of what it is not. It's not about getting drunk, pleasure, scoring, ahead of game, I'm playing game for wines blind tasting. Perhaps it is the reason why I love wine. It gives me a lot of insights. In a world digitized to distraction, a world I sometimes can't tell why I am so rushed for, wine remains utterly primary. The silent music of nature. In every sip taken in the present, we drink them with passion and a sip by sip tasting has come to mind in different thinking, I feel it is just like an art, "an abstract art". Wine matters because of this ineluctable connection. Anthropologically, they are often providing a lot of insightful findings and a reflection that carried life forward and sustained us through the sometimes-dark days of our own evolution. It reminds us of other things that matter, such as love, friendship, intimate conversation, deep thoughts and pour out, peace, get away and even a silent time.
The step by step journey brought wine so vividly into my life that I ultimately decided to be part of wine & spirit education trust, often referred to as WSET, is a British organization which arranges courses and exams in the field of wine and spirits. Regarded as one of the world's leading provider of wine education. I knew in heart; I love learning and I am sure WSET will bring a lot of answers to my curiosity of what is wine about. I have taken the courses up to level 3 in WSET courses. I have learned a lot and it helps me to know how to articulate the taste, read the insights and not just drinking the wine. Per Wine bible: "Wine has a way of pulling you into it of making you want to taste and experience more";
"It helps us to think deeply how is it that grapes can become a beverage of profound depth and complexity?"
How the grapes grown and produced were significant. It lies from history and different terroir, soils and weather have significant impact to it. The vintages, the cost, the food paired with and the maps, it's all contribute to the taste notes. Many wines required by tasting it repeatedly, the open-minded tasting experience will give you different perspectives of it. In that moment, you would say, "Oh my god, I got it." I feel that I view wine like an abstract art. Assembling all that experience is also the key fun part.
After years of tasting wines, I agree with the notes written by wine bible. Wine is great in distinctiveness, balance, precision, complexity, beyond fruitiness, length, choreography, connectedness, and the ability to evoke an emotional response. The experience I got is, the great wines are great because it brings you to distinguish the distinct character - it has more than just their aromas and flavors, but also distinctive in their textures. And It has the right balance of integration (acid, alcohol, fruit and tannin). And great wines flavors are precise, well defined and expressive. Wines do have complex flavors; the layers of aroma and flavor reveal themselves sequentially over time. Just when you think you've grasped the flavors, the other new flavors emerge, revealing different facets of the wine. A complex wine therefore can't be known in one sip. To me all of it, is just like an abstract art. The beyond fruitiness, become significant, complicated aromas and flavors things like worn leather, sweet spices, mocha, minerals to name a few. The persistence of a wine on your palate, even after you've swallowed, is called its length or finish. It has the lasting mouthcoating lingering in your mouth and it is what I like the most. The finest wines are multidimensional on the palate. Various of wavelengths of notes, force, volume and velocity. The final one amazed the most is, "Wow! It is fascinating!"
My favorite is connectedness. Perhaps it is another spellbinding to me. It is an appreciation and it is beyond appreciation. It can give you a connected emotionally to someone. It links between you and your homes and thoughts. Likewise, great wines not only appeal to the intellect; they give you the super power to make you feel, "Oh no, I am in it." Wine Sparks stop here!
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