Do you enjoy an evening of fine dining but shift around in your seat when the wine list arrives?
Not if you belong to Tokyo Wine Tasting Club.
Do you wish your wine knowledge extended beyond reds for meat and whites for fish?
Deepening your understanding of wine in a relaxed social setting, is the mission of the Tokyo Wine Tasting Club.
For the past twelve years, the club has conducted monthly tastings, each focusing on a different wine production region. Participants learn from a wine specialist, who speaks on the qualities of the region and the factors that contribute to the taste of its wines. Afterwards, participants sample wines together with the gourmet dinner.
The most valuable skill you will take away from these monthly gatherings is an understanding of cepage, or grape variety, and how it defines the character of the wine. You will learn which grapes and tastes appeal to you and how to explore them further to deepen your personal enjoyment of wine.
Most of the attendees have little or no background in wines but simply a thirst for knowledge. An average of 20-30 students attend each tasting, with regular participants from Japan, America, Britain, Canada and France. Though the talks are mostly in English, handouts in Japanese are available based on advance request.
Advance reservation is crucial because Philippe, the organizer, usually buys his wines directly from importers for the scheduled tasting.