The five senses of tasting

Professional oenologists and knowledgeable amateurs have over the years developed a specific vocabulary to express the characteristics of wine, the tasting of which requires the use of the five senses :

  • hearing, when the wine is delicately poured in the glass;
  • sight, when the eye appreciates the colour and the texture when it Is adroitly turned on the walls of the glass;
  • smell, when the taster’s nose breaths the aromas;
  • touch, when his lips enter in contact with the liquid;
  • and, finally, taste, when the wine meets the taste buds which cover the tongue and the palate.

The shape of the glass has an influence on the feelings experienced through the tasting of wine and many regions have, over time, adopted specific shapes and capacities. However, for comparative tasting, it is better not to be influenced by the shape of the glass, while ensuring the use of the five senses. This is why an international standard has been adopted by ISO (the international organization for standardization). It is ISO 3591 Sensory Analysis-Apparatus- Wine tasting glass (see