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How to host a blind wine tasting party

Hosting a Blind Wine Tasting Party

Hosting Blind wine-tasting is very easy, fun, and educational. Here are some steps for a successful party.

  • Pick your wine varietal, i.e., Merlot, Cabernet, Sauv Blanc, etc. Each of your guests will bring the same varietal of wine to the party.
  • Pick a date and time. Then, send out invites or text messages.
  • Set a budget for the price per bottle, and I suggest a $15- $40 range.
  • Will you be serving food? Keep it simple for snacks before tastings the wines.  Food can have a pick impact on how the wine will taste. Simple cheeses and crackers are excellent. But, as I said, keep it simple. You can always plan a larger meal after the tasting to end out the party. Or maybe keep it going. 

 $15 range to a $40 range; weeds out the two buck chuck wines. 

When guests arrive and wine tasting

  •  Open the bottles and remove the cork. You will slide the bottles into a canvas bag that you can buy for a blind tasting, but honestly, a paper lunch bag works excellent (pre number those bags, front and back.) it’s tall enough to take a little tape of the top to make sure it stays nice and tight. You will also want to remove foils. Fewer Clues, the better, and if you’re all doing the same type of wine, they will all be the same bottle shape. 
  • Once all your guests have arrived, give everyone their instructions on scoring, sometimes one through five. You can do a half-point system as well.
  •  Once everyone has finished tasting all of the wines, the host will collect everyone’s scores sheets and add the scores to the coordinating numbers. One with the highest score wines. 
  • The winning bottle, Whoever brought the winning bottle will have bragging rights, but you can also choose to give out prizes. 
  • Try to limit alcoholic beverages before the wine tastings.  Providing something like sparkling water or a mocktail instead is an excellent alternative. In doing so, the pallet will stay fresh and ready for wine tasting. (It also helps, so no one gets hammered.)  Keeping some crackers on the table while tasting keeps the pallet fresh and some carbs in the tummy. 
  •  The two best ways to conduce the wine tastings are. First, everyone does the exact wine simultaneously, which the host can control the speed. Word of caution, The power of suggestion is strong! Guests that talk a little too much; can sway the scores by listening ears.
  • Second, Let guests start with any number they choose. Then, everyone will go at their own pace filling in their score sheets. People talking about different wines are less like to have persuasion. Since that they are all the same type of wine, the order in tasting doesn’t matter. 

Extra Notes 

  I prefer paper bags because they are affordable, and you can find them almost anywhere. But, unfortunately, the fancy blind tasting bag sets only come with 4 or 5 bags. So you have to buy another set and don’t go up to the number and have two sets numbered 1-4. 

Wine pour sizes. All to pours of wine should be about an ounce, ounce in half. So 5 to 6 oz. is a standard glass of wine. Tasting 10 different wines, you will be consuming around two glasses of wine. There is about 25 oz per wine bottle. 

 Scoring:  Scoring sheets. Here is where your guest will do their part in analyzing and scoring the wines. Again, a number rating does work best. 

 These parties are so much fun is because you can take novice and professional together and still have an enjoyable outcome where everyone feels like they can participate at their level. 

Sadly sometimes priorities are different when it comes to being with our friends and this is the only photo we have of our last blind tasting party.
Paper bags are the best way to go when hosting a blind tasting.

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