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Wine Spectator School

Class 2: Tasting Reds

SUMMARIZE: Finish, Balance, Complexity

SUMMARIZE involves examining a wine's Finish, Balance and Complexity, and coming to a final evaluation of quality and appeal.



  • Finish refers to the length of time a wine's flavors linger in the mouth after swallowing or spitting and, like aftertaste, is an important indicator of quality.
  • In general, the longer the finish, the better the wine.




  1. Swirl, sniff, sip and swallow the wine.
  2. Pay attention to the length of time the flavors linger:


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