Taste is primarily smell related. So, in order to make sure you know the wine, you smell and taste it before introducing the food. That is one of the reasons wine drinkers taste the wine several times before drinking it. If your sense of smell is blocked it’s very difficult to distinguish between red and white wine.
Your surrounding and the aromas around you at the time you are tasting wine have a lot to do with your ability to smell the wine. For example, overwhelming aromas such as perfume and smoke can interfere with the wine tasting and smelling experience. If you are a wine consumer, you will learn that you can refine your sense of taste and become sensitive to a wider range of flavors and sense. You can learn to become even a better taster. Wine, at first, tastes like, um, “wine”, but over time you can learn to distinguish different grapes, different flavors, acidity, tannins, sweetness, alcohol content, bitterness, etc. and the balance between them.