It's time for me to confess: I am in fact a complete wine newb. When I was hired by Snooth I knew next to nothing about wine (at Oxford I once asked "How can a wine be dry, when it's liquid?" I'm going to pretend I didn't see you laugh). I didn't understand how "process" a wine's taste or tell other people what I was tasting, and why so many people enjoyed this very odd tasting drink was a complete mystery to me. Suffice it to say that I've rapidly lost my naivety since joining up.
I've been introduced to the art of tasting a wine, and properly experiencing it -- letting the subtle flavors and aromas play out in your mouth, so I can understand (and more importantly enjoy) a wine. Thanks in part to this, and in part to Jancis Robinson's How to Taste I've also learned to understand what wine critics (and anyone else) mean when they say that a wine is "dry" or "full-bodied" or "hot with a hint of chocolate on the attack and lots of tannins" -- and much to my amazement when I found out, they aren't just making it all up to sound sophisticated -- it's all there!
Though I may still disagree, or not "get" a wine from time to time, looking at various characteristics that Snooth lists for wines has been a big help with that. I can look at tags for a wine that I know and figure out the appropriate words to describe a certain part of what I taste. So, while I'm still a wine newb, after being at Snooth I'm hopefully experienced enough to handle myself around a bottle back at Oxford.
You'd be surprised at how much you can learn about wine from writing SQL queries for Snooth's databases.
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