Tasting notes made easy

pouring wineIf these weekly columns have inspired you to organise your own wine tasting at home, then you'll need to get some kit together. Buy yourself some large wine glasses (cheap supermarket ones will do) for capturing any wine aromas released when the wine is swirled prior to sniffing and tasting. And to help you keep track of all the wines you taste why not use my free wine tasting sheet available from http://paulagoddard.com/images/stories/wines/paula goddard wine tasting sheet.pdf

tasting sheetThere’s space to record the wine colour (red, white or rosé) as well as where you bought it and for how much. It’s also useful to keep a note of what the bottle label says so that if you like the wine you’ll have a good chance of finding exactly the same, or a similar type, again.

The tasting sheet also has space to record the grape varieties used in the wine – these will be displayed on the label, unless it's French, when these will be hidden from you, because you shouldn't need to ask should you? A white Burgundy will be made from Chardonnay grapes, a red Burgundy from Pinot Noir, and Bordeaux reds (or as we English like to call them, Clarets), will be a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes.

Once you’ve written all that down you’ll finally pour the wine. Give it a sniff so you can make a note of its aroma and then sip and taste. There are no right or wrong words for the aroma and taste – write down whatever you think the wine smells and tastes of even if that's home-made custard or Persil washing up liquid.

Not sure what wines to get for the tasting? Then try these aroma-friendly and slurpable bargains.

Villa Maria RieslingPG Wine Reviews

Co-op Fairtrade Argentinean Pinot Grigio 2014
£5.99 Co-op (down from £6.99 until February 2)

I get aromas of peaches, lemon and flowers with more floral goings on in the taste – do you?

Monte Giove Sicilan Pinot Grigio Chardonnay 2014

£7.49 Co-op

A very pale green coloured wine with aromas of apple and almond, then flavours of leon and hazelnut tart.

Sainsbury's Taste the Difference Languedoc White

£8 Sainsbury's

A blend of three grape varieties – Grenache, Marsanne and Vermentino – results in aromas of digestive biscuit and flavours of light melon.

Beronia RiojaMondelli Italian Chianti Riserva 2012

£8 Sainsbury's

A complex red so there's lots to get in each box on the tasting sheet: a meaty aroma that reminds me of Marmite plus some blackberry and clove spiciness. Then by giving it a good slurp the flavours of blackberry, cherry, violet creams and cocoa can be discovered. Too much?

Leon Perdigal Cotes di Rhone 2014

£8.99 Majestic

Creamy cherry and raspberry flavours, along with some chewy liquorice.

Gran Corte Chilean 2012

£11.99 Lidl

A big, big red wine this and matched with an impressively heavy bottle. More meaty aromas then smooth blackberry flavours, followed by damson and fresh redcurrants. Watch out for the 14.5% alcohol.

This article also appeared as Paula's Wines of the Week on MatureTimes.co.uk