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In the past weeks we've learnt why to conduct a water tasting, the perfect water tasting technique and which are the best tools for a water tasting: today it's time to talk about wine. The first written text dedicated to water and how to harmonize it with wine would have remained incomplete if certain distinguished sommeliers of national and international renown had not been invited to join in the “discussion”.
Any debate on this argument in fact involves assessing the organoleptic properties of wine and water in their entirety, as well as their innermost, recondite nuances of aroma and flavour. The sommelier is the principal professional figure equipped to make such assessments, since part of his or her professional knowhow is to distinguish and identify taste factors in infinite detail. Prompted by the need to perfect their art, sommeliers are always keen to discover products from all over the globe, be they already acclaimed or otherwise littleknown. Furthermore, owing to their unique capabilities, sommeliers also attract the attention of the client, establishing his trust and inducing him to explore memorable new experiences at the dining table.
This is why each one of the sommeliers convened chose a wine of a particular quality within a known type, describing it in technical though often surprisingly poetic terms, so as to foster greater understanding of the product, and help the newcomer to grasp the procedures for harmonizing a given wine with one of the two mineral waters discussed. While these experts have a special way of speaking of water and wine, describing with the utmost ease the exquisite properties of these two products, they have also provided some interesting pointers on the “pleasant debate” on how and where to harmonize the two. It is owing to their daily professional activity, in which they are in constant contact with the consumer, that they can successfully “relate” their remarkable new gastronomical experiences.
CEZAR CANOVAS, Best Sommelier of Spain 2002
RIOJA RESERVA, Spain
Rioja is an excellent wine produced with tempranillo vines; it has deep ruby hue with a hint of slightly orange-red at the borders. Its bouquet is rich in aftertastes that denote tobacco leaves, leather, vanilla, liquorice and mature blackberries, redcurrant and trail into notes of wood and noble spices. In the mouth it triggers a keen sense of warmth which adequately offsets the sense of acidity and the tannins, which remains present but smooth. The fine, elegant structure carries the sensations through for some time, and it is best harmonized with S.Pellegrino.
This text is taken from The S.Pellegrino and Acqua Panna Water Codex, a book written by international sommelier Giuseppe Vaccarini and Claudia Moriondo (Doctorate in Food Preparation Science). With this book S.Pellegrino & Acqua Panna studied and codified the guidelines, the best techniques and tools to conduct water tasting, with the aim to create a common language for everyone who whish to explore this topic.