Saturday, May 15, 2010

Wine Term Pronounciations

It is that time of year when tasting rooms are opening up again, if they haven't already. Which means you might want to bulk up on your wine terminology and pronunciation before you go winery-ing.

Raise your hand if you've ever tripped over your vowels and consonants trying to pronounce some French or German wine terms such as, Chambourcin, Sommelier, or Gewurztraminer? It's similar to when you got to a nice Italian restaurant and you end up just pointing to an item on the menu when the waiter comes around because you don't know how to pronounce it. "I'll take.....that one."

Or is it just me?

Wouldn't it be nice if you could go to a wine tasting and just roll "terroir" off your tongue if you get a chance to speak to the vineyard manager and ask him or her some questions?

I was talking to a friend who has made a couple of trips out to the California wine country recently. While she is a wine fanatic and loves talking about wine, she said she got embarrassed when she got a chance to meet the wine maker in the tasting room and mispronounced a lot of wine related terms. She spoke with him about her dream of quitting her job and becoming a sommelier. Except that she didn't know how to pronounce sommelier, and said, "som-a-lear" because that is how she has always read it.  So she felt she lost all credibility.

When she told me this story, we went to work to try and combat this little phonetics problem. Lucky for us we discovered a few great little sites on this thing called the world wide web that offered some assistance.

Now, I would have had this post up days ago if I had actually figured out how to post audio clips on my own blog. But after much research and trial and error, I've decided to just link up to the other site, which has already done all the work already anyway.

Wine Lovers' Page has lots of brief wine related term definitions and audio pronunciations. Check it out!

There is today's hooked on wine phonics lesson.