How To Host the Ultimate Wine Tasting Soirée

If you’ve ever dreamed of hosting your own at home wine tasting, you’re in for a treat.

I’m here to spill the secrets on how to host a wine tasting that will have your friends knocking down your door for the next one.

1. Preparing For Your Night

Plan your theme, create the invites, and set the mood!

Choose a theme that makes sense for you, but I’ll be planning a French soirée. Keep it classy with Parisian vibes and warm-toned colors like burgundy, gold, and navy. And no wine tasting can start without giving your friends the low-down with a cute invite. This is first taste of your party, so make sure it pops! Let your friends know the deets like what they need to bring, dress code, and more to set the vibe of the night.

Here’s what mine would look like!

2. Time To Taste

Now here’s where the real fun starts–let the tasting begin! Here’s what you’ll need to create a successful wine tasting.

  • Wine, Wine, and More Wine: It wouldn’t be a wine tasting without some variety. Since I’m planning a French wine night, my wines will be from La Belle France. Make sure you pick a diverse set of flavors, like a Pinot Noir from Burgundy, a Riesling from the Rhine-region, and of course, Champagne from Champagne! A good rule of thumb is to provide half the number of bottles per total guests. So, if you have 10 friends coming, you should have 5 bottles. I’ll be bringing 6 different wines to my party. To make sure I have a diverse set for the tasting, I’m going to have 2 reds, 2 whites, 1 sparkling, and 1 rosé.

  • Setting Up Shop: Label each wine clearly, providing guests with information on the varietals, regions, and any unique characteristics. Here are some printable templates you can use so your friends can jot down their impressions, scores, and whether or not they’d like to take another few sips.
  • Pick (And Raise) Your Glasses: For my soirée, I’ll be creating dedicated tasting stations equipped with the appropriate glassware, spittoons, and palate-cleansing water and crackers. The most boring, unflavored crackers will do the trick! Remember, the type of glasses and tools you have are almost as important as the wine itself. Make sure to check out my recent video on how to choose wine glasses based off the bottle before you begin.
  • Food, Glorious, Food: Don’t forget to bring snacks like cheese, crackers or crisp fruits like apples or pears. I’ll also be making a charcuterie board with French cheese classics like Brie, Comté, and Camembert. Check out my blog on how to pair unique foods with wine for some more ideas!

3. My Best Wine-Tasting Tips

Now that your party is all set up, here are my tips on how to make sure your guests have the best experience tasting your carefully curated wines.

  • Serving Temperatures: Let your friends know the importance of serving wines at the appropriate temperatures. My blog on How To Serve Wine Like A Pro will cover all you need to know, but just for a quick breakdown, white wine is best served chilled at 45-55°F, red wine is best served slightly below room temperature at 55-65°F, and sparkling wines are served well-chilled at 40-45°F.
  • Tasting Order: There’s a correct order for tasting wines! Always start with tasting lighter wine first–if you start with heavy glass of wine, your palate will be too overwhelmed for the lighter wines.
  • Proper Tasting Techniques: Fill your friends in on all the wine facts you’ve learned from my online wine course by teaching them the proper way to taste wine. Talk about observing the color, swirling the wine, smelling the aromas, and sipping with attention to detail. At most wine tastings, you’ll notice people using spittoons, or spitting buckets, in between wines. Feel free to provide this for your guests to get the proper experience! And don’t forget to read my blog on How To Taste Wine Like A Pro before you start–there’s an art to tasting you’ll want to master.

4.Party On

With these tips, your party is destined to be the talk of the town (or at least your group chat). So, pop those corks, clink those glasses, and don’t forget to take plenty of photos and videos for your socials to look back on.

Happy tasting!

Sources:

1:https://halleckvineyard.com/how-to-taste-wine-11-tips-for-your-first visit/#:~:text=The%20first%20trick%20on%20how,overwhelmed%20for%20the%20lighter%20wines

2:https://www.torres.es/en/blog/regional-food-wine-pairings-if-they-grow-same-place-theyre-good-match