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Wine Spectator School

Class 5: Old World Model: France

sip: taste, body, flavor


  1. Sip and swish your Bordeaux and try to assess both taste and body in a single step.
  2. Swallow or spit, and mark your worksheet.
  3. Repeat with the Côtes du Rhône.
  4. How do you find the wines?
    • Generic Bordeaux, reflecting the properties of its dominant component varieties (Cabernet and Merlot), is commonly tannic and possibly quite rough, and medium to full in body.
    • The Côtes du Rhône, similarly reflecting the qualities of its dominant Grenache-Syrah blend, is more acidic and less tannic than the Bordeaux, but is normally similar in body.



  1. Sip, swish and swallow or spit the Bordeaux and identify its flavors; mark your worksheet.
  2. Repeat the process with the Côtes du Rhône.

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