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Know your wine, On the Vine!

Welcome to On the Vine. We’re about good wine, and if a little smarts can make wine taste even better, we’re in. Why? Because knowing your wine will improve your experience and appreciation, tenfold.

On the Vine welcomes you to a forum by tastemakers who know a thing or two about wine. We’re bursting with wine facts, do’s and don’ts and everything in between, where no one story is ever the same. We’ll treat you to an abundance of wine news, info, fables and yarns – nothing boring, we promise!

Wine Wise in 5

Good things come in fives. If you’ve got 5 minutes, we have 5 tips guaranteed to enhance your enjoyment - and keep you looking classy - while you’re sampling the good stuff.

Step 1

Slow Down

OK. You’ve been hanging out for that glass of wine – we totally get it. But stop and take a breath.

Your wine deserves your full attention: take your time and enjoy the experience.

Step 2

Drink Less

It’s the old ‘less is more’ concept. Fill your glass to about one-third at most (you’ll thank us later).

BONUS: When you drink less, you can afford to drink better. *Insert smiley face here. Yours...

Step 3


Swirling your wine releases aromatic vapours that enhance aroma and flavour. Hold your glass by the stem and gently swirl it round for 5 – 10 seconds allowing the wine to swoosh up the sides of the glass. If you’re a beginner swirler - or wearing white - execute the tabletop swirl: all of the above, but with the base of the glass resting safely on the table. Still classy.

Step 4


Your nose can detect thousands of aromas: it’ll tell you more about the flavour of your wine than your tongue possibly can, so put it to work. Get your nose right down into that 1/3 full glass and take a good long sniff.

Now, engage the brain: if you can identify fruit, spice, oak - or anything other than just wine - you’re a natural!

Step 5


Worth waiting for! Take a sip of wine and let it spread across your tongue. Swish it around to coat your mouth. Now, here’s what the pros do: with a small amount of wine resting in the hollow of your tongue, suck in some air through your lips so that it flows over the wine - increasing aeration, and releasing even more flavour (full disclosure: this requires practice. If wine comes out your nose, you’re doing it wrong). Assuming no embarrassing nose action: Swallow, smile, and repeat steps 3 – 5.