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'How To' - Take part in our virtual #TWSTaste events

Virtual tastings are fantastic events that allow members to engage with one another over their shared love of wine, whilst enjoying a bottle from the comfort of their own home! However, they can be slightly confusing and a tad overwhelming if you’ve never attended one before! Remember, whether you’re a beginner or an expert, everyone is welcome and there are no wrong answers! So, if you’re a new member to The Community and aren’t quite sure what to expect or how to get involved, please read on…

What is a TWSTaste?

This is the name of our virtual tastings. You’ll see them referenced in the topic headings, along with the date of the tasting. Look out for this word and you’ll likely find yourself on the right thread!

You can also use the little numbered blue circles to locate the topic - the circles mean that there are new posts on that particular thread waiting to be read.

It’s all typing!

There is no audio or video - you engage by typing your comments and replies onto the thread. (I’ll show you how to post a comment in a mo!)

The tasting is announced a week beforehand

This will be a new topic beginning with ‘NEW #TWSTaste virtual wine tasting’ and will then list the name of the tasting, plus the date. This thread is for members to chat about the the wines they will be trying, before the tasting begins.

Usually, this announcement lets you know the wine we’re planning to taste together, and gives you time to purchase it. We would all usually taste the same wine, but this new lockdown has meant we’ve had to adjust these tastings a little! Now, we chose a broad style/region of wine and invite members to pick a bottle that they already have in their collection at home. THIS MEANS LOTS OF DIFFERENT WINES ARE BEING TASTED AND COMPARED, SO ALL BOTTLES ARE WELCOME! And if you don’t have the chosen style/region in your collection but fancy joining in anyway, please do!

On the day of the tasting, a new topic is created - this is the LIVE thread where the tasting will take place!

You will need to click on the thread and use the scroll bar on the left (or your laptop/phone touchpad) to scroll up to the top and read the introduction - the introduction is full of interesting info about the wine region/style and more information about the way the tasting will run, so we definitely recommend having a quick read of it before starting!

You can then scroll down to read the thread and scroll all the way to the bottom to start posting a reply.

There will also be a poll asking who is online and ready to take part - feel free to vote to show that you’re attending!

Now that you’re on the live thread, it’s a good time to share with other members a picture of the wine you have chosen to taste!

Hit the blue REPLY button at the bottom of the thread…

…and just start typing your hellos and the name of the wine you are drinking!

To upload your image, click the ‘image’ icon on the text box taskbar:

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And once you have finished your message, just click REPLY. This will add your comment to the thread!

If you see another member’s post that you enjoy, you can ‘like’ it by clicking the heart button under their comment. Other members might also ‘like’ your comments too!

If you see a message and want to reply to it, click the REPLY button under their post - this will bring up the same text box as before which you can use to post your reply. The arrow at the top of the box, followed by the member’s username, shows who you will be replying to.

QUOTE another comment and reply to it directly!

Quoting is a really useful feature - it lets you take a specific part of another member’s message that you might want to reply to and it includes it at the top of your own reply. We encourage quoting at these tastings - it makes it easier to track who is replying to who and what!

Just highlight the text you want to quote and then click the grey QUOTE button that will appear.

This will then bring the quoted text into your REPLY text box.

Then simply write your comment, click REPLY and it will show on the thread with the quoted text visible above!

GIFS!!!

We love a GIF on The Community! A GIF is basically a series of images placed together to make a short, soundless video clip that plays on repeat. You’ll see a lot of these throughout the thread, they’re really fun and break up the text a bit, so please feel free to use them!

You’ll have to visit the website https://giphy.com/, type your theme in the search bar at the top, click the GIF you want to use, then click ‘COPY LINK’ on the right, and finally copy and paste the ‘GIF LINK’ into your reply!

So, that’s basically how to use the thread and write your replies! One of The Community staff will host the tasting, and invite members to pour, smell and taste their wines at different points.

You’ll be able to follow the host’s comments because they will be large and bold, like this sentence!

If you want to leave the thread at any point, just click The Wine Society logo at the top left of the page header- this will take you back to The Community homepage.

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And that, in a nutshell (sort of) is how to participate in our virtual TWSTastes! We really hope you can come along to one, and that you’ll enjoying engaging with other members, tasting your wines and perhaps learning something new. All from the comfort of your sofa/dining room/bed(!) on a Thursday evening!

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Great, thanks @Kelly,

One question, if we all paste in loads of gifs, are we contributing to the network issues that seem to happen when there are loads of us posting on the same thread?

Sorry @Leah

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Haha! You shouldn’t be, no - the network issues shouldn’t be happening and we’re just liaising with our hosting service to get this fixed - hopefully by this Thursday! :slight_smile:

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Hi @laura This is a great introduction to the process and will help enormously. I was also getting the impression that some newcomers to the tastings might also welcome some guidance on what to comment on? Say colour, aroma, acidity, tannin, flavours etc and perhaps how a wine changes as it warms up (if too cold from the fridge), what food it might be good with or what they like/don’t like about the wine.

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