Free Interactive Wine Tasting Course

Would you like to spend two weeks refining your wine tasting skills under the tutelage of a winery owner—for free? Beginning Monday, March 7th, the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters (www.eGullet.org), fondly referred to by its 13,000 members as eGullet, will be featuring a free course on wine evaluation for its internet readership.

(PRWEB) March 7, 2005 -- Would you like to spend two weeks refining your wine tasting skills under the tutelage of a winery owner—for free?

Beginning Monday, March 7th, the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters (www.eGullet.org), fondly referred to by its 13,000 members as eGullet, will be featuring a free course on wine evaluation for its internet readership.

Mary Baker, a wine forum host on eGullet and managing partner of Dover Canyon Winery in Paso Robles, will be instructing the class and guiding students through the process of learning to evaluate wines. Baker, who has taught courses on wine evaluation and food and wine pairing, will lead students through a series of short activities and exercises. The course will be online for two weeks, during which time students can ask questions and receive guidance directly from Baker.

"The class will begin with ten basic steps to evaluating wine, " says Baker, "and then we will study how to evaluate specific red and white wine varietals. And we'll conclude by learning to spot winemaking techniques and how they affect wine." Information on constructing an aroma component kit is included, and a wine evaluation guide will also be provided for students to download and print.

This free culinary website hosts two ‘Culinary Institute’ sessions per year. Previous instructors have included James Villas, author of Between Bites - Memoirs of a Hungry Hedonist, and Steven Shaw, recently named one of the "35 most fearsome talents in food and wine," by Food & Wine magazine.

The eGullet Society’s Culinary Institute has featured dozens of courses on topics like kitchen science, cooking with disabilities, braising techniques, and pasta. Although each course is given top billing for two weeks, all courses are still open to internet readers, and instructors are on hand to answer questions. In addition to wine tasting, the current semester will feature classes on Indian vegetable dishes, roasting, pasta, condiments, cooking on a budget, and presentation.

How do you register? Just log in, check the list of recommended wines, buy a few bottles, and get comfy with your computer, suggests Baker. "It would be a fun course to share with friends," she points out. "If you invite five friends over for an evening of internet wine evaluation and everyone brings a bottle of wine, you’ll get to evaluate six wines for the price of one."

Baker co-hosts the eGullet wine forum with Brad Ballinger of St. Paul, Minnesota. In addition to the Culinary Institute wine course, Baker and Ballinger post educational Wine 101 threads in the wine forum. "The threads stay open continuously, and we have a Wine 101 index, so new members can easily find and read the topics, or ask questions," says Baker.

"The eGullet forums and site stay focused on culinary content, so you won’t find superfluous chatter about babysitters and car repairs when you’re looking for solid material," says Baker. "And we try to provide a range of topics in the wine forum for novices to sophisticates, so that everyone can interact and learn."

Baker and Ballinger also sponsor a wine-of-the-week tasting tag, featuring readily accessible and affordable wines. "We have lots of sophisticated wine reviews in the forum," says Baker, "but many of those wines are not widely available or they’re sold out. This idea came out of a lively debate on east coast vs. west coast preferences. We thought, ‘hey, let’s all find the same wine and sit down and drink it together at our virtual table.’ It’s more about studying personal preferences in wine than learning to write reviews. We’re learning a lot about each other."

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Source :  http://www.prweb.com/releases/2005/3/prweb215361.htm