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Wine Tasting - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780123790767, 9780080521701

Wine Tasting

1st Edition

A Professional Handbook

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Author: Ronald Jackson
Hardcover ISBN: 9780123790767
eBook ISBN: 9780080521701
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 1st February 2002
Page Count: 295
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Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Visual perceptions
  3. Olfactory sensations
  4. Taste and mouth-feel sensations
  5. Quantitative (technical) wine assessment
  6. Qualitative (general) wine tasting
  7. Types of wine
  8. Origins of wine quality
  9. Wine as a food beverage Glossary Index


One of the most respected professionals in the wine industry-Ron Jackson, author of Wine Science (now in its second edition)- covers all practical and theoretical aspects of wine tasting in his new book. It details the basic techniques used by professionals to sense all visual, gustatory, and olfactory wine properties (sight, taste, and smell). It also describes the physiologic, psychologic, and physicochemical origins of sensory perception and discusses wine types to illustrate the characteristic features that distinguish the majority of wines.

A large portion of the book is dedicated to the practical concerns of preparing and performing wine assessments. Readers are instructed in how to differentiate between the various types of wine tastings (each requiring its own design, tasting sheets, training, skill measurement, and analysis). Included is a general overview of the types and sources of wine quality and how wine is most appropriately paired with food. Special features include a flow chart of wine tasting steps, details of errors to avoid, procedures for training and testing sensory skills, sample tasting sheets, original data from 14+ years of training tasters, and numerous tables, charts, and figures.

Key Features

  • Modern treatment of all relevant data relative to wine tasting, both professional and personal
  • Separates the practical and more technical and theoretical aspects of wine tasting, allowing easy access to people of different interests
  • Stresses the explanation and significance of each step in the tasting process, as well as errors to be avoided
  • Outlines procedure in the training and testing of sensory skill (professional and personal)
  • Presents sample tastings designed to teach tasters specific varietal, regional and stylistic types of wines
  • Provides examples of tasting results and means for analysis
  • Discusses the evolution of cuisine and wines association with food
  • Outlines the diversity of wines and the sensory experiences expected with each
  • Outlines the nature and origins of wine quality

Illustrative Material:

  • Flow Chart of Wine Tasting Steps
  • Examples of Tasting Sheets: Hedonic (hierarchy and numerical ranking), Wine Appreciation (blank and complete examples), Quality assessment (general, sparkling, artistic ranking), Sensory Analysis (quality and aroma specific)
  • Fragrance Chart (with colored icons)
  • Off-odor Chart (with colored icons)
  • Color transparency representing standardized wine color terms
  • Color illustrations representing the appearance of wines of different ages
  • Warming-cooling chart for bottles of wine (air and ice water)
  • Table of aroma descriptors for the major grape varieties (red and white)
  • Chart of the warming rate of wine in a glass
  • Figure showing the influence of alcohol content on 'tears' formation
  • Taster variability to the major tastant and odorants in wine


For people involved in wine tastings, commercial judging, quality assessment of wineries, wine societies, wine appreciation courses, or training of tasters (wineries, wine merchants, university courses). Also serious wine connoisseurs who want to maximize their perception and appreciation of wine.


No. of pages:
© Academic Press 2002
1st February 2002
Academic Press
Hardcover ISBN:
eBook ISBN:


"This volume details the practical and theoretical aspects of critical wine tasting, in the context of human sensory perception, from the techniques used by professionals to assess wine properties and quality, to the physiological, psychological and physiochemical origins of sensory perception...Numerous tables, charts and figures throughout this volume provide excellent illustrative material to support the detailed information presented in text. In conclusion, this comprehensive volume is highly recommended to any individuals involved in wine tasting, from professional tasters and those who train tasters and design tastings, to amateur wine connoisseurs, who want unbiased information on how to maximize their perception and appreciation of wine." --Carbohydrate Polymers (2005)

"This book by Dr. Jackson is very entertaining and informative to read. He has succeeded in writing a wine tasting book that would appeal to the experienced wine aficionado as well as to a faculty member teaching a beginning wine sensory or wine tasting class...This author enjoyed this book and would recommend it. In fact I am seriously contemplating using it in my Wine Sensory Evaluation course." -- H. Heymann, Department of Viticulture and Enology, University of California- Davis, September 2004)

"...very entertaining and informative to read. ...would appeal to the experienced wine aficionado as well as the faculty member teaching a beginning wine sensory or wine tasting class." --FOOD QUALITY AND PREFERENCE (2003)

"...a solid text that offers practical information on the sensations of wine for many types of readers. Extensive use of diagrams, tables, charts, and illustrations enhances the volume...a useful book that will find a number of audiences. It deserves a place in many academic collections not for what it has to tell us about wine, but about human physiological responses to the seduction of the liquid. Recommended." --E STREAMS (June 2003)

"Wine Tasting is without question the finest book addressed to wine sensory technology that I have ever seen during my 41 years in wine. Being an academic, I am particularly impressed by the scientific support which Dr. Jackson provides for explaining human evaluation and interpretation of various wine aromas, flavors, virtues and vagaries. His text is, however, not beyond the comprehension and understanding of people who are not formally trained in the enological sciences. This book will also become a standard reference for the 325 students which study in my 4th-year Wine Appreciation class at Purdue University every semester. As a judge at several wine competitions across the U.S. every year, and as Chairman of the Indy International, one of the largest, I will make it a point that my fellow judges have the opportunity to learn of this essential work. Wine Tasting advances the state of the art."
Richard P. Vine, Purdue University, Indiana, U.S.A., Wine Consultant to American Airlines

"The author should be commended for undertaking to write on this subject matter. Bringing the science of sensory evaluation to the wine industry is needed and the author has provided an extensive amount of information, some very solid reference material, all presented in a text that is easy to read. There are numerous tables and figures, referenced with both current as well as some important historical information. Information about the origins of the much maligned Davis wine scorecard is welcomed, especially for one of us (HS) who was one of the subjects while the scorecard was being developed. We expect that all winemakers will find this text informative and possibly will take some exception; none the less, much benefit will be derived from reading the text in its entirety, but probably not in one sitting!
The author also discusses the relationship of wine writers and the science of sensory evaluation, a topic that gets relatively little coverage, yet it needs more discussion if the industry is to make the transition from a cottage industry to a packaged goods business.
Sensory professionals also will benefit from this text and it should be part of the required reading for students in both enology and sensory evaluation." —Joel Sidel and Herbert Stone, Tragon Corp, California, U.S.A., authors of Sensory Evaluation Practises, Second Edition

"As a whole, the book is a generous package of information, thus updating and providing a scienctific background for sensory research on wine." —Hely Tuorila, Department of Food Technology, University of Helsinki

Ratings and Reviews

About the Author

Ronald Jackson

Ronald Jackson

Ron Jackson received the bachelor's and master's degree from Queen's University and the doctrine from the University of Toronto. His time in Vineland, Ontario, and subsequently at Cornell University redirected his interest in plant disease toward viticulture and enology. As part of his regular teaching duties at Brandon University, he developed the first wine technology course in Canada. For many years he was a technical advisor to the Manitoba Liquor Control Commission, developed sensory tests to assess the tasting skills of members of its Sensory Panel, and was a member of its External Tasting Panel. He is also the author of Conserve Water, Drink Wine and several technical reviews. Dr. Jackson has resigned from his position as a professor and the chair of the Botany Department at Brandon University to concentrate on writing. He is allied with the Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute, Brock University.

Affiliations and Expertise

Brock University, Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute, St. Catharine's, Ontario, Canada