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How to Host a Home Wine Tasting During Quarantine

Wine tastings in general can be difficult to manage.  Knowing the right wines, a good time to start, and when to finish can be stressful.  Add a pandemic to the mix, and it seems like it could be impossible.  Luckily, we are here to assist you in making sure your pandemic wine tasting goes off without a hitch! 


Knowing Your Audience

The first, and maybe the most important part of the tasting is to understand your audience.  Nothing is worse than having a tasting and losing interest because it is either too simple or too difficult. 

If you have a group of beginners, start with single varietal wines in different structures.  Two whites and two reds will work great.  A Riesling from Germany compared to a Sauvignon Blanc from France is a great way to start.  Riesling from Germany tends to be on the sweeter side with notes of stone fruits, while a Sauvignon Blanc will be dry with notes of citrus.  Both are delicious but very different.

For a more advanced tasting, a comparison of the same grape from two different regions is a fun, yet educational comparison.  Pinot Noir is a wine that takes on a lot of the climate and the terroir of the appellation that it is grown in.  Tasting a Pinot Noir from California will be driven on notes of cherry, strawberry, and raspberry.  A Pinot Noir from Burgundy though, will have notes of truffle, mushroom, and earth.  The grapes are the same, but the cooler climate of Burgundy doesn’t allow the grapes to ripen and become too fruity. 

Understanding who will be drinking the wines is essential to creating a successful tasting.


Finding the Right Time

Finding the right time for a quarantine tasting can be difficult.  You don’t want it to be too long and you don’t want it to be too short.  You want it at the right time within a time frame that grabs and keeps the attention of the tasters.  

The actual tasting itself should be no more than an hour.  What you do after the tasting is up to you, but anything more than an hour could be boring and you could lose interest.  Remember that most of the time your patrons are there to conversate and have a good time.  If it feels too much like a class, they may not want to be there anymore.

The best time to have your tasting is early evening.  Plenty of time to have the tasting without having to go too late at night, and not early enough that it messes with people’s afterwork rituals.  

Now you can be confident when setting up your quarantine tasting.  Remember wine is made for socializing, so kick back and have fun!

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