WEEK two of Chris Baker's wine appreciation class and the topic of the evening: the purpose and procedures of wine tasting. The most important sense in determining a wine's composition, age, condition and quality is smell. Aroma was easier to remember than colour or flavour so to help assess a wine correctly, Mr Baker advised everyone to identify each wine with one characteristic - smell. Assistance with terminology came in the notes for the week, which included a long list of the most common adjectives used by wine tasters. If ''burnt'', ''dirty'' and ''jammy'' did not spring to mind when faced with explaining a wine's aroma, Mr Baker offered solace. ''Choose a term you understand,'' he said. ''One that will trigger your wine memory on later occasions.'' To illustrate the points raised, three cabernet sauvignons - from Bordeaux, New Zealand and Chile - were tasted over the course of the evening. The Bordeaux and New Zealand wines were classic examples of the genre, consisting of a blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot and cabernet franc grapes. The Chilean, however, was 100 per cent cabernet sauvignon. ''Cabernet sauvignon is the king of the black grape,'' Mr Baker said. ''It's what gives this wine most of its colour. But it also has lots of tannin, which needs time to soften. That's why the merlot is added. ''Drink cabernets too young and the taste will be harsh.'' After a while, a consensus was reached: cabernet sauvignons smelt of blackcurrants. The whiffs of herbs and cooked cabbage came from the merlot, while hints of wood came from the oak barrels in which the wines were aged. Cabernet sauvignons were not ready to drink for at least five years, Mr Baker said. Fine Bordeaux need at least 10 years, often much more. He said many local wine merchants could not afford to invest in ageing and therefore sold wines when they were still too young to drink. Only the knowledgeable would know they needed laying down to develop. For those who suspect a wine may be too young for enjoyment, Mr Baker explained one method of detection: swirl the wine around the glass and after it has settled, look for glycerine ''legs''. They will be a good distance apart if it's a young wine; a young red's will have a pink tinge. The Wine School can be contacted on 366-5844.