So maybe you can't quite pick out those rosemary notes from the hints of mahogany in your vintage pinot, but don’t give up hope yet!
Here are a few wine tasting tips from Sommelier Lisa Redwine (yes that’s really her last name), just in time for this weekend’s San Diego Bay Wine and Food Festival.
1. First and foremost, eat! There is a lot of wine and even if you are just tasting, it can sneak up on you.
2. Scope out who is pouring what. Try what you really want to taste first.
3. Start with whites and then reds. If all the wines start to taste the same, go and drink a little sparkling or high acid white wine. It will refresh your palate.
4. Drink lots of water.
5. Spit. It's totally acceptable
6. When you taste, don't monopolize the wineries’ attention. Have them pour, step aside and then if it's not busy you can have a longer conversation.
7. Sign up for websites of the wineries you loved. Often you forget all you have tasted and it helps you remember which ones you loved and want to order.
8. Try as many wines as you are unfamiliar with - whether it's a country, region or varietal. I bet you will discover something new to fall in love with.
9. Go online and see who is pouring before the event. It will help you decide where to start.
The San Diego Food and Wine Festival runs through Nov. 20. Visit their website for a schedule of events.