Software that makes placemats

Organise events to meet up and drink Port.
Roy Hersh
Niepoort LBV
Posts: 281
Joined: 21:55 Mon 31 Dec 2007

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by Roy Hersh » 08:30 Mon 31 Mar 2014

Daniel,

I do an occasional tasting of Port and/or Madeira and my format never changes. As I am a techno-failure, Glenn typically helps me to organize and print out the placemats using the brilliant software that has been designed and upgraded by Julian.

I prefer and always do, have the line of wine at the front of the tasting sheet, go from left to right and that L-R theme continues back in each row. I never vary this, even when doing less formal tastings on my own. and all judgings I take part in, lineup their flights in this manner as well.

I hope that helps!


Best regards,

Roy

User avatar
jdaw1
Cockburn 1900
Posts: 20476
Joined: 15:03 Thu 21 Jun 2007
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by jdaw1 » 08:41 Mon 31 Mar 2014

Roy Hersh wrote:I prefer and always do, have the line of wine at the front of the tasting sheet, go from left to right and that L-R theme continues back in each row. I never vary this, even when doing less formal tastings on my own. and all judgings I take part in, lineup their flights in this manner as well.
Roy: please help persuade others by saying why you prefer this.

Glenn E.
Quinta do Vesuvio 1994
Posts: 3354
Joined: 22:27 Wed 09 Jul 2008
Location: Seattle, WA, USA

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by Glenn E. » 16:22 Mon 31 Mar 2014

I prefer for my placemats to go from front left to back right in row major order, but for my TN sheets (at least in theory) to go top to bottom.

Reasoning:

1. As for AHB, writing top to bottom seems obvious. Otherwise one could smudge previously written notes.

2. As I progress through a tasting, I tend to get... tipsy. Or worse. It is best if, as the evening progresses, I do not have to reach over full glasses in order to pick up the next glass to drink. Catastrophes can happen. Best that they not involve full glasses of Port.

3. When pouring prior to starting the tasting, we generally pour youngest to oldest but reverse that for drinking (oldest to youngest). It therefore makes sense to fill the placemat from the back while it is empty and there are no glasses in the way. Then #2 kicks in for the tasting of the Port.

Note that our placemats tend to be more crowded than yours. I will put 20 glasses on USL2 (11" x 17") or 10 glasses on USL (8.5" x 11") in order to leave as much room as possible on the table for other things.
Glenn Elliott

User avatar
djewesbury
Graham’s 1970
Posts: 8153
Joined: 20:01 Mon 31 Dec 2012
Location: Belfast
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by djewesbury » 16:32 Mon 31 Mar 2014

I was with you until this bit:
Glenn E. wrote:When pouring prior to starting the tasting, we generally pour youngest to oldest but reverse that for drinking (oldest to youngest). It therefore makes sense to fill the placemat from the back while it is empty and there are no glasses in the way. Then #2 kicks in for the tasting of the Port..
You drink oldest to youngest? You drink the most mature and more delicate stuff first? I must admit to always having done it the other way around – saving the best to last… but now you've put the idea into my head I can see that tasting a delicate, ethereal, fully mature wine after some blousy tannic blockbuster may make little sense.

Does this sensational revelation from Glenn change anyone's already stated opinion?
Daniel J.
delete.. delete.. *sigh*.. delete...

Glenn E.
Quinta do Vesuvio 1994
Posts: 3354
Joined: 22:27 Wed 09 Jul 2008
Location: Seattle, WA, USA

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by Glenn E. » 16:38 Mon 31 Mar 2014

djewesbury wrote:You drink oldest to youngest? You drink the most mature and more delicate stuff first?
Yes, of course.

It isn't as true now as it once was, but think back to 2005. The monsters that were the 2003s have just been released. You're about to do a vertical of Noval. Do you really want to ruin your palate - and everyone else's - by tasting the 2003 Noval first?

Always drink VP oldest to youngest. Enjoy the delicate nuances of the old wines first, then let the gradually increasing power of the younger wines slowly take precedence.

Also - drink the fabulous old wines first before you are drunk and can't tell the difference. :nirvana:
Glenn Elliott

User avatar
jdaw1
Cockburn 1900
Posts: 20476
Joined: 15:03 Thu 21 Jun 2007
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by jdaw1 » 17:05 Mon 31 Mar 2014

Glenn E. wrote:
djewesbury wrote:You drink oldest to youngest? You drink the most mature and more delicate stuff first?
Yes, of course.
Certainly I taste the oldest first. Sometimes, and less often than I should, I save a little of the oldest to drink late evening. But the tasting starts with the oldest.

Though “oldest” can mean oldest-looking, at which AHB hinted.
AHB wrote:on many occasions I will pick glasses out based on something other than the order in which they are placed on the sheet - apparent evolutionary age, for example.

User avatar
jdaw1
Cockburn 1900
Posts: 20476
Joined: 15:03 Thu 21 Jun 2007
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by jdaw1 » 17:48 Mon 31 Mar 2014

By way of example, assume there are twelve ports: Oldest, 2, 3, …, 10, 11, Youngest. If arranged in a rectangle, there are eight obvious ways to order these.

1. Favoured by JDAW (most occasions), DRT, AHB, PhilW. And, after the re-think below, Flash.
Image

2. Favoured by Roy Hersh, Glenn E., and perhaps Daniel J.
Image

3. Favoured by JDAW for a big vertical, because it is easier to set out the glasses (the reaching is slightly-around rather than over). MiD by PhilW.
Image

Not liked.
Image Image Image Image Image

User avatar
djewesbury
Graham’s 1970
Posts: 8153
Joined: 20:01 Mon 31 Dec 2012
Location: Belfast
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by djewesbury » 17:51 Mon 31 Mar 2014

This is a very instructive and useful thread. I am reconsidering and will update to Glenn's / Roy's pattern.

Perhaps a parameter should be added, a little like /Lefthanders (could be called /Americans ?) that allows different users to have their mat arranged as they prefer it?
Daniel J.
delete.. delete.. *sigh*.. delete...

User avatar
jdaw1
Cockburn 1900
Posts: 20476
Joined: 15:03 Thu 21 Jun 2007
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by jdaw1 » 17:57 Mon 31 Mar 2014

djewesbury wrote:Perhaps a parameter should be added, a little like /Lefthanders (could be called /Americans ?) that allows different users to have their mat arranged as they prefer it?
Currently everybody has the same layout. Changing that to be by-person would have lots of awkward consequences. It would be a lot of unsatisfactory work.

That’s a refusal.

User avatar
djewesbury
Graham’s 1970
Posts: 8153
Joined: 20:01 Mon 31 Dec 2012
Location: Belfast
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by djewesbury » 17:58 Mon 31 Mar 2014

*sigh* :roll:
Daniel J.
delete.. delete.. *sigh*.. delete...

User avatar
flash_uk
Dow 1980
Posts: 2708
Joined: 20:02 Thu 13 Feb 2014
Location: London

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by flash_uk » 19:59 Mon 31 Mar 2014

This analysis has me reconsidering. My preference is to start at the top of tasting notes, and drink oldest first. I think the primary factor for the layout is to minimise the potential for knocking things over which is more likely at the end of 12 glasses than at the start, and considering it is more likely (I think) that things nearest to the front of the placemat are knocked over, it seems that it might be a better idea to go for option 1 above. The choice between option 1 and option 2 being (assuming I like tasting old first):
1: knock over a probably fuller glass of something younger
2: knock over a slightly less full glass of something older

However, option 1 is preferred, because after 8 glasses, I am on the "front" row and therefore not lifting/placing glasses over the top of others for glasses 9-12. With option 2 after 8 glasses, I am heading for the "back" row. Uh Oh. If it's a horizontal, then I would still prefer the order of option 1 even though there is no older/younger, for the "front row after 8 glasses" benefit already described.

This may be what someone else has already concluded and explained above, but I'm only just getting it!
Last edited by flash_uk on 20:07 Mon 31 Mar 2014, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
flash_uk
Dow 1980
Posts: 2708
Joined: 20:02 Thu 13 Feb 2014
Location: London

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by flash_uk » 20:04 Mon 31 Mar 2014

jdaw1 wrote:Currently everybody has the same layout. Changing that to be by-person would have lots of awkward consequences. It would be a lot of unsatisfactory work.

That’s a refusal.
Having recently looked at the software to attempt my first placemat, I can fully understand why adapting it to have by-person layouts would add an almighty amount of complexity!

User avatar
djewesbury
Graham’s 1970
Posts: 8153
Joined: 20:01 Mon 31 Dec 2012
Location: Belfast
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by djewesbury » 20:07 Mon 31 Mar 2014

He's done much more complex things. I don't know, you offer a constructive suggestion…
Daniel J.
delete.. delete.. *sigh*.. delete...

Roy Hersh
Niepoort LBV
Posts: 281
Joined: 21:55 Mon 31 Dec 2007

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by Roy Hersh » 21:39 Mon 31 Mar 2014

Having consumed wines during judging competitions and at trade and personal events for more than 3 decades now; old habits die hard.

Glenn has learned well, in a fairly short period of years :!:

With VP and in any vertical of wines, I've always preferred oldest to youngest for numerous reasons.

User avatar
jdaw1
Cockburn 1900
Posts: 20476
Joined: 15:03 Thu 21 Jun 2007
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by jdaw1 » 21:47 Mon 31 Mar 2014

jdaw1 wrote:Currently everybody has the same layout. Changing that to be by-person would have lots of awkward consequences. It would be a lot of unsatisfactory work.
djewesbury wrote:He's done much more complex things. I don't know, you offer a constructive suggestion…
An example difficulty, using an example glasses page on which /CrossHatchingTitles true def.
Image

There is also a pre-pour sheet (shown smaller).
Image

Daniel wants a re-ordered version of this glasses page. If that is done by moving circles and not changing the cross-hatching, it would look weirdly disjointed. No. If it is done with changing the cross-hatching, circles on the American glasses page wouldn’t match the pre-pour page. No.

Plus, the parameter controlling this would be very cryptic (and there really are enough of those already). Plus plus, it would be a lot of unsatisfactory work.

No.

User avatar
jdaw1
Cockburn 1900
Posts: 20476
Joined: 15:03 Thu 21 Jun 2007
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by jdaw1 » 21:49 Mon 31 Mar 2014

Roy Hersh wrote:Having consumed wines during judging competitions and at trade and personal events for more than 3 decades now; old habits die hard.
So Roy’s preference, adopted by his near-neighbour Glenn, is attributed to habit. For the youngsters amongst us (looks around — everybody just pretend) who are still choosing what habits to adopt, that reasoning seems insufficient.

User avatar
djewesbury
Graham’s 1970
Posts: 8153
Joined: 20:01 Mon 31 Dec 2012
Location: Belfast
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by djewesbury » 22:11 Mon 31 Mar 2014

I have updated the placemats, but since this is a small tasting I have clung to my 'American' glass-order. I put this forward as an experiment and will report the company's feelings towards it.
Image Image
Daniel J.
delete.. delete.. *sigh*.. delete...

Glenn E.
Quinta do Vesuvio 1994
Posts: 3354
Joined: 22:27 Wed 09 Jul 2008
Location: Seattle, WA, USA

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by Glenn E. » 23:28 Mon 31 Mar 2014

jdaw1 wrote:
Roy Hersh wrote:Having consumed wines during judging competitions and at trade and personal events for more than 3 decades now; old habits die hard.
So Roy’s preference, adopted by his near-neighbour Glenn, is attributed to habit.
This doesn't seem possible. As he has already admitted, Roy isn't a techno-whiz. For me to have adopted his habit, I would have had to have seen and/or used placemats that he created. I don't believe that such a unicorn exists.

It is more likely that I learned my habit from someone other than Roy, but the list of possibilities is rather short. It could have been G-man or SushiNorth, but since we meet only once per year and I've been the instigator of those meetings, that doesn't seem likely. (It is noteworthy, however, that both G-man and SushiNorth use the same arrangement that Roy and I use.)

That leaves only... jdaw1. But the first placemats that I ever used were these, and as you can see they use jdaw1's current preference. Which makes sense because he made them.

Which means that I developed my habit organically on my own, as I was introduced to placemats via jdaw1's preference and could not have been indoctrinated by observing placemats produced by Roy. It remains possible that I was indoctrinated by G-man or SushiNorth, but I find that difficult to believe based on timing.
Glenn Elliott

User avatar
djewesbury
Graham’s 1970
Posts: 8153
Joined: 20:01 Mon 31 Dec 2012
Location: Belfast
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by djewesbury » 23:31 Mon 31 Mar 2014

So who's indoctrinated me??
Daniel J.
delete.. delete.. *sigh*.. delete...

User avatar
DRT
Fonseca 1966
Posts: 15193
Joined: 23:51 Wed 20 Jun 2007
Location: Chesterfield, UK
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by DRT » 23:33 Mon 31 Mar 2014

djewesbury wrote:So who's indoctrinated me??
Whoever had most influence on your life until the age of seven.
"The first duty of Port is to be red"
Ernest H. Cockburn

User avatar
djewesbury
Graham’s 1970
Posts: 8153
Joined: 20:01 Mon 31 Dec 2012
Location: Belfast
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by djewesbury » 23:40 Mon 31 Mar 2014

My mum? I'm pretty certain she'd have gone for the nearest glass too.
Daniel J.
delete.. delete.. *sigh*.. delete...

User avatar
jdaw1
Cockburn 1900
Posts: 20476
Joined: 15:03 Thu 21 Jun 2007
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by jdaw1 » 00:10 Tue 01 Apr 2014

Glenn E. wrote:Which means that I developed my habit organically on my own, as I was introduced to placemats via jdaw1's preference and could not have been indoctrinated by observing placemats produced by Roy. It remains possible that I was indoctrinated by G-man or SushiNorth, but I find that difficult to believe based on timing.
The first version of the /BottomToTop feature was added to the code on 19th October 2008, shortly after making for RAH the placemats used on 18th October 2008. (And my oh my, that was a tip-top event.) Also, I vaguely recall a conversation with Roy at this time about this desideratum. So RAH was the cause of that piece of functionality.

Which might or might not help ascertain the origin of GEE’s preference.

Roy Hersh
Niepoort LBV
Posts: 281
Joined: 21:55 Mon 31 Dec 2007

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by Roy Hersh » 00:34 Tue 01 Apr 2014

I was not intimating that Glenn learned from me, just that he's picked this stuff up in a rather short period of years, overall.

As to reasons, since it seems that Julian is all about learning the "why" ... here are three of many good reason to explain my point above.

a. the winemaker/journalist group that initially brought me into and taught me proper dynamics of wine judging, always instilled in me to drink wines from oldest to youngest. So this would fall under, "learned behavior."
b. Old wines have more subtleties and therefore should be experienced early in a given tasting, because these nuances are best experienced when the palate is at its freshest during a tasting with more than a couple of wines in it. Try having a 2003 side-by-side with a 1945 or older Vintage Port. Try the oldest first and then the younger one second. Now reverse this order during a 2nd pass. Which do you find allows you to best discern the organoleptic qualities of the pairing? For me, there's no question which direction works best. Tried and true for my palate. YMMV.
c. Younger wines have bolder flavors and by far, more prominent tannins and if they precede old wines in a vertical, or just random tasting, their characteristics will often overshadow the refined distinctivenss of well-aged wines/Ports.

Just a few examples of why going from oldest to youngest makes more sense to me.

User avatar
jdaw1
Cockburn 1900
Posts: 20476
Joined: 15:03 Thu 21 Jun 2007
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by jdaw1 » 00:39 Tue 01 Apr 2014

Roy Hersh wrote:Just a few examples of why going from oldest to youngest makes more sense to me.
Completely agree; not controversial.

But why from bottom of page to top? One could put the oldest at the top, or at the bottom. My default is to put oldest at top, and start there. Why do you want the oldest at the bottom of the page?

Roy Hersh
Niepoort LBV
Posts: 281
Joined: 21:55 Mon 31 Dec 2007

Re: Software that makes placemats

Post by Roy Hersh » 09:11 Tue 01 Apr 2014

Because I don't view a piece of paper lying on a table with circles on it as having a "top and bottom" as you do. For me, the top is where the glasses are placed, the bottom faces down to the table cloth. :wink:

For me, I call what you consider the bottom of the page, "the front" and what you consider the top of the page, "the back". Semantics of course, but you are the expert there Mr. Wiseman. I like to have my older wines in the front and not the back. That being said, I typically will pour the back row first as it can stand up to more air time. By the time the front row is poured from a decanter or if really old, the bottle itself, it is typically ready to drink.

Post Reply