Tannins are tasted (or at least for me) mostly on the insides of the cheeks, not so much on the tongue. They have a dry dusky feel to them.
But trying to write what something tastes like is tough. It is a little like trying to describe what "Fire Engine Red" is to a blind person.
A sensible question, and I agree with Irwin, tough to define. Head to the best wine store in your area and buy two different makers' 2004 red Bordeaux. $20 bottles will be fine. In one, most likely both, you'll taste robust tannin in effect. Always best to have your own definition.

While it's not Cab, but a Sangiovese clone, If you have a bit of cash, most 2001 Brunello di Montalcinos (from Italy's Tuscan region) should do. Try a Frescobaldi Castelgiocondo.
Interesting. You prove my point with your analogy. A blind person will never be able to describe red, because red is absent.

In the same way, while I can describe the presence of tannins in my mouth because I sense the physical puckering of my cheeks followed by the absence of saliva, the absence of tannins I cannot describe. I simply say: this particular wine does not give the astrigent sensation.

Then again, I am a novice and thus, have not developed the poetic jargon so commonly used to describe the taste of wine.

quote:
Originally posted by irwin:
Tannins are tasted (or at least for me) mostly on the insides of the cheeks, not so much on the tongue. They have a dry dusky feel to them.
But trying to write what something tastes like is tough. It is a little like trying to describe what "Fire Engine Red" is to a blind person.
A sensible answer for detecting tannins. (I will leave well enough alone.)

Can someone help me with Indybob's suggestion to head to the best wine store in my area, Orange County, CA.?

The world is full of willing people; some willing to work, the rest willing to let them. --Robert Frost

quote:
Originally posted by indybob:
A sensible question, and I agree with Irwin, tough to define. Head to the best wine store in your area and buy two different makers' 2004 red Bordeaux. $20 bottles will be fine. In one, most likely both, you'll taste robust tannin in effect. Always best to have your own definition.

While it's not Cab, but a Sangiovese clone, If you have a bit of cash, most 2001 Brunello di Montalcinos (from Italy's Tuscan region) should do. Try a Frescobaldi Castelgiocondo.

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