Expand your wine tastes!

Written by: Cameron Ward

Published: 05/15/2020

Reading time: 4 mins

Wine tasting like a professional takes years of experience and an expert knowledge base of tasting notes. In fact, there are degrees and courses specifically designed to teach you how to smell, taste and serve wine.

However, not everyone can or wants to be a wine expert and that’s cool, but what if you want to expand your wine tastes without the pressure of knowing it all.

When people start drinking wine, they will generally start somewhere very sweet such as a Moscato. Moscato could be called the gateway wine, it’s a commonplace for young drinkers to start as they move from sweetened mixed drinks to more ‘adult’ alcohols. However, many drinkers still aren’t enjoying the wine, they’re just drinking it.

So, if you’re looking to expand your pallet a bit and ready to move on from drinking ‘lolly water’ all the time here are a few wines to get you started.

  • Moscato

    Let’s talk about Moscato and other sweet wines quickly. As they are generally more enjoyable for the less experienced or serious wine drinker, they have somewhat of a reputation for being cheap or low quality. This perception is so wrong! There are cheap sweet and cheap dry wines, so try not to fall into the trap of thinking that sweet = bad, because you’d be wrong.

    Give yourself permission to try a more expensive or higher quality sweet wine and you might be surprised by it!

  • Rose

    Roses are a good way to begin bridging from sweet wines to drier varieties. Roses can be either sweet or dry, so they are great for slowly building your taste for drier wines. Start with a rose-Moscato blend and work your way to a dry rose.

    Rose is one of the most versatile wines on the market. For a long time, Australian roses were snubbed as sweet, candy-coloured drinks for cheap or young people. However Australian winemakers have rebranded themselves, producing some of the best Rose examples in the world. Many of them receive high praise and exquisite wine rating scores.

    Internationally Roses have been enjoyed far longer. Roses pair fantastically with a broad range of foods, which is why they are so popular in places such as Europe where wine is shared at mealtimes with friends and families.

    One of the best rose available in the Barossa Valley is the Spinifex Luxe Rose. The Luxe Rose is made using only grapes that give the wine secondary fruit flavours such as berry or dried flowers. If you miss out on a bottle of Luxe Rose give their Rose a try. It is a less complex tipple and perhaps may be better if you’re only just starting to expand your wine tastes.

  • Reds

    If you’re not a big wine drinker red wine can be rather intimidating. Fear not though for the Barossa Valley is one of the best places there is to begin your red wine journey.

    There are three types of red, light, medium and full-bodied varieties. The best place to begin is light-bodied, this will make your movement from white easier as they are lightweight and great ‘gateway’ wines. From here you can easily move into fuller-bodied wines which generally have stronger, bolder flavours and higher tannins (check out our How to Speak Wine post for more on that).

Lucky for you the Barossa Valley is world renown for its splendid red wines. The absolute best way to get yourself drinking these delicious tipples is to sit down for a tasting or seven and allow an experienced winemaker to walk you through the drinks you are having.

Related article: 7 things you know wrong about wine

Cameron Ward
Cameron Ward
Managing Director at Sightseeing Tours Australia

Cameron Ward turned his travel passion into a thriving Australian tourism business. Before he co-founded his own business, Sightseeing Tours Australia, he was enjoying being a Melbourne tour guide. Even now, Cameron delights in helping visitors from all around the world get the most out of their incredible Australian trip. You’ll see Cameron leading tours or writing about his favourite Australian places where he shares his local insights.