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Wine tasting party

Saturday we hosted our first wine tasting party. We went to one at a friends house last year and it was a lot of fun, so we thought we’d try our hand at it. We don’t know all that much about wine so we wanted to keep it light and casual, and not too snooty. We did end up getting lots of different kinds of cheeses to go along with the wine, and had a pretty impressive spread on the dining room table (cheeses, breads, crackers, appetizers, veggies, and desserts).

Here’s how it works: Each guest (or couple) brings a bottle of red wine costing under $20. The wines are poured anonymously (hidden in paper bags), one at a time, with each guest getting 1-2 ounces. Guests rate each wine from 1-5 (poor to excellent). At the end, the wine with the highest average score wins, and the person who brought it gets a prize.

Rather than call the wines “Wine #1”, “Wine #2”, etc., it’s recommended to choose a theme for the tasting, and name the wines after French cities for example. Our theme was Star Wars :-). Each wine got a Star Wars character name, like Yoda, or Luke. One of the advantages to my newly unemployed status is it gave me the time to create fancy score sheets for everyone (click on the image to the right to check it out).

Anyway, the party was lots of fun, and we had a great turnout of guests. After the wine tasting segment was over several folks started playing Wii bowling and tennis. Kathie had to make sure people kept backing up from the TV so we didn’t have a problem with Wii remotes smashing the TV like so many other people have had. We also got to show off the new FiOS high definition TV content by playing an episode of Discovery Channel’s new series, Planet Earth, which uses some revolutionary new high definition filming techniques and looks fantastic in high-def.

Oh, the winning wine was Obi-Wan.

Update: It was brought to my attention that I never posted the list of winners, so I’m adding them here, somewhat belatedly.

Character Wine brought Avg. Rating
Obi-Wan Erben Merlot-Spatburgunder 2003 3.67
Han Solo Marcus James Cabernet Sauvignon 1998 3.11
Chewbacca Placido Chianti 2004 2.97
R2-D2 White Hall Vineyards 2005 2.89
Yoda Edna Valley Syrah 2003 2.89
Leia Terra Andina Merlot 2006 2.75
Wedge Post Familie Zinfande 2.68
Darth Vader Glass Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon 2002 2.61
Boba Fett Yellow Tail Merlot 2006 2.58
Jabba Graystone Pinot Noir 2004 2.56
Lando Franciscan Oakville Estate Merlot 2003 2.25

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