The experience you will have at a winery is dependent on three things, the ambiance of the tasting room, the quality of the wines, and the knowledge and personality of the person pouring and talking about the wines. Lose any one of those and the whole experience suffers. Visiting a winery is a holistic experience.
Oh yeah, there is a fourth, the people you bring with you. Wine tasting at it's best is a social experience as well.
Visiting a wine tasting room is so much more than just drinking wine. So what should you do when visiting a winery? Well, drinking wine is certainly one of the better parts of it, but the experience starts before you even pick up a glass. Look around the room. Many tasting rooms reflect the personality of the owners, local artists, or the history of the region. Take in the people. Are they serious wine fans, a bachelorette party, a reunion, or just people out enjoying the day with wine.
You can sit at the bar and talk with the pourer, who may even be the winemaker. Or you can sit at tables, or a couch, and get to know your friends better. Some tasting rooms are all about the wine. Others are about shopping. Most are about a good time. Whatever the details, there are two things they all have in common, wine, and a love of wine.
And, of course, wine tasting is good for your brain. A Yale neuroscientist found that tasting wine engages more of the brain than any other human behavior. Cognitive tasting, not just drinking wine, but the kind of tasting one does at a winery tasting room. When you are examining the different sights, tastes, textures, aromas and characteristics of what is in your glass you are triggering analytical patterns, memory, judgement, and of course, enjoyment. So swirl, sniff, sip, swallow, and enjoy. Your brain will thank you.