Hosting a (Blind) Wine Tasting Tips

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We have hosted plenty of wine tastings and some blind tastings too. Today I’ll share some tips to success.



  1. When, Where and with Who?


You can use any place you prefer: home, wine cellar, restaurant, rented space, etc. I’ve hosted plenty of tastings at our home for 5-15 people. If you want to host in your home you need to have enough classes and equipment there, also you need to clean up and do dishes.


I’ve been in couple of tastings hosted in restaurants and wineries. Pros in those is that there is more space for people, plenty of glassware and tableware available and sometimes there is also personnel who can serve and clean up. This option is obviously more expensive but good for bigger groups and special occasions.


The idea of blind tasting is that you and the guests do not know what the wines are. You have to recognize the color, scent and flavors. Doing blind tasting requires some basic wine knowledge. If you want to make this easier for beginners you can type names of wines and their characteristics on post it notes and ask people to match name / characteristics and a wine.



  1. Inviting People


If you’re hosting a small event at home inviting people 1-4 weeks in prior is usually early enough. With bigger events earlier is better. When inviting people tell basic things like where and when the tasting is, if there is a dress code mention it and also, if you want guests to bring some wine or snacks mention that too.




  1. What Equipment You’ll Need?


Wine classes, wine bottle opening equipment, some bowls for snacks, white paper for color evaluations, tasting sheet or paper and pens for notes. With these basic equipment you can host your first tastings. After some time you might want to get some more equipment, here in my old post are some I’m using a lot.



  1. How to Choose Wines for the Tasting?


There is actually many different tasting options from which you can choose from. You can for example concentrate on one category like red wines, or more specifically wine from Bordeaux. I have written a post about this topic earlier. Click here to read that and learn how to choose wines for tasting


If you’re doing a blind tasting you can decide will you give some information about the wines or will you let your guests figure out everything from countries to grape varieties themselves. For beginners it’s good to offer some information but the more professional you come the less information you’ll need. Remember not only think your skills but also think the knowledge and experience level of your guests. It can be challenging but don’t make it impossible for them! 🙂




  1. How to Choose Food / Snacks?


At least you should have water and some kind of bread or crackers so that you can clear your mouth from the taste of previous wines. Other classy pairing are cheese and fruits. You can also combine wine tasting with dinner. It actually really fun to not only taste and analyze wines but also analyze how they pair with different flavors and textures from food.


Earlier I’ve written couple posts about pairing theme:

Pairing Food and Wine

Pairing Cheese and Wine


  1. Yes, indeed it is important to have some neutralizing snacks that can help the taste buds return to a normal state before tasting the next wine. When will you hold the next one?


  2. I love wine but I have to admit that I’m not that good at recognizing the characteristics of each product. I would love to try out a wine tasting but I’m definitely not ready to host one, maybe in a few years. 🙂


    1. If you’re interested you sure can learn to recognize those characteristics. It’s good to either go to couple of tastings for beginners or to read a bit about tasting technique and scents and flavors there can be. You can start by reading wine section of this blog. Google and YouTube can also offer you some good resources. And soon you’ll be hosting your own tasting! 🙂


  3. Such interesting tips and tricks. I am not a huge drinker myself, but my friends love their wine. This could be a great way to get the girls together for an evening.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. A blind wine tasting sounds like fun, waiting eagerly for my invite to your next one 😉 I’m not a huge wine drinker as I prefer sweet whites or rosés to red wines also wine gets me very drunk, very quickly and gives the worst hangovers ever!! 😊 xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, we should totally have a blind tasting with fellow bloggers! It would for sure be a lot of fun. 😄 What comes to hangovers maybe you should try some organic, sulfite free reds? For some people those don’t cause anything even if other reds do. ☺️


  5. You have never mentioned that grapes were only for decoration. You should never eat grapes with wine because they change the taste worse. People have usually cheese, crackers, jellys etc. And grapes. People dont know that and they say that they dont like wine. Maybe because of grapes?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Pretty awesome to see a wine host like that! Goos tips for having one. I’m pregnant now so I can’t enjoy this, but I will keep it in mind for after the pregnancy because I love wine!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are right, blind tasting requires some knowledge. There is though some ways to make it easier. For example if you have to let’s say four wines and you also have four description in front of you paring those with wines is a lot more easier than recognising the wines without any hints.


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