An aperitif is a drink one has before a meal. The purpose of the drink is to open up the appetite, hence, the drink will be slightly bitter and tarty. A good aperitif is Campari, a mix which can be combined with anything, like grapefruit juice.

A digestif is a post meal drink, which will aid in digestion. A good digestif is Lustau Cream Sherry. The rich red color and slight sweetness will be a good end to a meal.

White wines, which have a more subtle and fruity flavour, go well with soft creamy cheeses. Specifically, Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, Gerwurztraminer, and Rieslings pair well with brie, camembert, goat cheese, and gruyere, and blue cheese.

Red wines, have a stronger and more complex flavour. Varietals, such as Merlot, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Syrah are well matched with Cheddar, Gouda, Havarti, Double Gloucester, and Stilton.

If there is an assortment of cheeses, then white wines and the cheeses that pair with it be consumed first, before having red wine. This way the stronger flavors in red wine will not mask the flavors found in white wine.

In Greece, the dinner host would take the first sip of wine to assure guests that the wine was not poisoned. From this practice, arose the phrase “drinking to one’s health.” In the modern age, the "host toasts first" rule only applies to receptions and other large functions. The only guideline for toasting is that no glass should be empty when the toasts are being made. The glasses don't have to hold champagne, wine, or any other alcoholic beverage. It is perfectly acceptable for non-drinkers to toast with water, juice, or a soft drink.

- Fruity white wines, such as German Rieslings (sweetness code 1 or 2), are slightly sweeter and pair very well with Spanish, Chinese and Indian dishes. Drier fruity white wines provide a contrast to the spice and richness in the food. - Lighter reds, like Pinot Noir, Gamay, Beaujolais, and Zinfandel are recommended for spicy food. Avoid full bodied wines, like Cabernet's or Merlot's, since the spice in the food will accentuate the bitterness in the wine. - A general rule of thumb, avoid stronger wines because the heat from the chillies will be amplified by its content.

Wines are served in a glass that has a slightly curved rim at the top. The slight curved rim helps contain the wines aromas in the glass. A flaring, trumpet shaped glass will cause the aromas to dissipate. The ideal glass should be thin with a finer rim.

Select smaller wineglasses for white wines and larger glasses for red wines. Generally, full-bodied wines work best in slightly larger glasses while lighter, fruitier wines do better in smaller glasses. A smaller glass is better for white wines since it will prevent the wine from over breathing, before consumption. A larger glass is better for red wines since the larger size of the glass will allow greater aeration. Select a balloon shaped wineglass for red wines, since the balloon shape will allow the flavors and aromas to open up, which in turn will allow the wine to develop to its full finish. Wine needs room to breathe and a tapered shape is the best form for releasing the aroma. For still wine, have a fine, plain and colorless glass. If the glass is chunky, has designs or color, you won't be able to appreciate the appearance of the wine inside.

Health Benefits Of Red Wine by Jocelyn Laurel on HealthReviewCenter.com

  • Lower the cholesterol level: according to studies from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid in Spain, high-fiber red Tempranillo grapes that are used to make red wines like Rioja, can have a considerable effect on cholesterol levels.
  •  Protect the heart: the antioxidants in red wine like polyphenols may help keep blood vessels flexible and lower the risk of unwanted blood clotting.
  •  Control blood sugar/diabetes: The skin of red grapes will be useful for diabetics because it can help them regulate their blood sugar levels.
  • Boost the brain: Resveratrol, a powerful antioxidant compound in red wine, may be the key to keep people's memory sharp.
  • Fight off a cold
  • Weight management

White wines are more acidic. Red wines have more tannins. The more acidic a white wine is, stronger pangs can be felt on the sides of a person's tongue. The more tannins in a red, the dryer your mouth will become. To train the palate with a sensory visualization – think lemons for acidity, and black tea for tannins.

Swirling a glass of wine is important because it allows the fragrance of the fruits to fill the glass, starting the aromatic party – so to speak. A simple swirl does the trick. Wine should be poured to the widest point of the glass, which allows it to breathe.

Aging beyond what is good compromises pleasure. If it does not add flavor while aging, why cellar at all? Usually the shelf life after the date of bottling is three to five years. A white wine should never be cellared.

Open the bottle of wine and wait a few minutes to allow the wine to breath. "Breathing" means the wine comes in contact with oxygen in the air and this unlocks the inherent flavors and aromas in the wine. Pour the wine about a third of the glass. Swirl the wine in the glass a couple of times and wait for a few minutes. This further releases the aromas in the wine and opens up the flavor within. Sip the wine slowly and enjoy the myriad of flavors.


Aromas in wines come from fermentation. Initially, grapes are crushed to obtain grape juice. During fermentation of the grape must, yeast in the grape juice activates the latent characteristics and aromas of the berries, which can be smelled and tasted as aromas and flavors in the finished wine. No other flavors are added to the wine.

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