How To Participate in Virtual Wine Tastings: The Minimalist Guide

How To Participate in Virtual Wine Tastings

Wouldn’t it be cool if we could taste wine together virtually? That was the question echoing in the Webosphere just a few years ago. Sure, the technology was there, but it was slow and stodgy. I’d rather remove the “d” in stodgy, replace it with a stogy and puff slowly on a Cuban Partagás or a Nicaraguan Rocky Patel Torpedo rather than watch a choppy, slow moving video that cuts out every 10 seconds. Even today, the technology is not perfect, but it has improved quite a bit which makes virtual tastings not only possible, but also easy to use and it works fairly well.

Since participating in the New Zealand Complexity live tasting event, my email box has been filling up with questions about how to participate in virtual tastings, so I thought I would create a quick little cheat sheet to get everyone dialed in on how it works. So here is goes…

Create a twitter account

Find events

 Prepare for the event

  • Register for the event: Many programs use Eventbrite for registration. Once registered, add the intive to your calendar so you don’t forget about it!
  • Live Streaming Video: Most of the events have a mechanism to view the party from the hosting location. The invite will inform you of which live streaming video they will use. Typically, it is either UStream or Livestream. When you find out which streaming video to use, I would recommend creating an account and testing the software prior to the event.
  • Buy the wine: Most events will let you know where to buy the wine (locally or online). If there were several bottles to buy, I would recommend inviting friends. Ask everyone to buy one of the wines to split to cost of the party.


  • On the day of the event, chill your whites (1 hour prior) and open your reds (maybe 20 minutes prior)
  • Sign in to all applications such as twitter, UStream or Livestream
  • Introduce yourself on the social media platform once the event kicks off
  • Drink, twitter, chat and enjoy! Oh yes, one last thing. Most events use #hashtags so don’t forget to use them. Not sure what a #hashtag is? No worries, read this introduction!

Hit me up with a comment if you have any questions.


About the Author:

Editor and co-founder of, Pamela is a sommelier and former restaurant manager and wine buyer with Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), Court of Master Sommeliers & Center for Wine Origins certification. She has contributed to or been quoted by various publications, including the Los Angeles Times, Sommelier Journal, Vegetarian Times, VIV Magazine, UC-Berkeley Astrobiology News, The Washington Post, the Associated Press, NPR and USA Today. True to her roots, she seeks varietal and appellation integrity and is always passionate about finding the next great bottle of wine.


  1. Jim February 14, 2012 at 7:41 AM - Reply

    I’m all jazzed up to try one of these events.

    • enobytes February 16, 2012 at 7:14 PM - Reply

      It’s a pretty cool way to taste wine with the experts!

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