On March 4th and 11th, Bon Vivant hosted a two-session seminar with Harold Toussaint of The Wine School. The task? To learn about major wine varietals. Two classes, twelve wines. Week one: whites. Week two: reds. The result? Twelve students with an increased knowledge of varietal characteristics and wine terminology.
Among the wines tasted were Riesling, Viognier, Gewürztraminer, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, and Pinot Noir. With much swirling, sniffing, and sipping, the class learned how appearance, aroma, mouth feel, and finish characterize different varietals. And more broadly, the class discussed the impact of soil and climate on wine varietals. By tasting the same varietals grown and produced in different countries, students noticed the differences within one varietal. A French chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc were remarkably more subtle than their counterparts from California and New Zealand.
And who better to learn from than Harold Toussaint? A Maitre Sommelier and founder of The Wine School, a business focused on wine education, he has an outstanding palate; he can look at, smell, and taste a wine and tell you its type, country and region of origin, and age. Participants in the class might not be at this level quite yet, but they’ve certainly been empowered to keep tasting and learning!
Keep an eye out for future educational events offered at Bon Vivant!