Let’s talk about wine…
Like in any other special industry or just hobby the special terms one finds in serious wine discussions may look exotic. However they are based on concrete tastes and flavors. Such words like ‘nose’ and ‘tongue’ have different meanings amongst wine experts and enthusiasts than in general language.
We often find ourselves engaged with guests staying at our rental cabin in Front Royal, our rental cabin in Amissville, as well as our rental cabin at Bryce Resort, discussing various Virginia wines they've enjoyed in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.
These simple tips will teach you how to understand complicated wine discussion and also how to describe the many flavors of different wines. If you are absolutely unfamiliar with flower wine- speak ,keep in mind that complex descriptions for flavor often have more easily-understood synonyms.
Wine tasting is determined by five general factors: alcohol, acid, glycerol, tannins, fruit.
Let’s start with these general terms:
Acid - The acids in wine are necessary component in wine making. The Northern wines usually contain more acid than the South wines. The acid is sometimes balanced by the sugar. Excess acid can tell about bad wine( especially a semi-dry or semi-sweet).
Crisp– A fresh young wine , a well-balanced of acidity and sugar.
Light-bodied– Light in color, neutral, sometimes spritzy flavors. One might say that a certain red wine is “light –bodied “ referring to “light” taste and tannin structure. Dry wine with low alcohol is typically light-bodied. Talking about light/thin body, wine testers usually mean something watery. However, there is a bit of substance here: you are drinking wine, not water.
Body– The body of the wine is “the weight”.This is essentially the cumulative effect of alcohol, tannin and fruit.Take note of how heavily or light the wine feels in your mouth . So, if it is “light”, the body of the wine is described as light-bodied. “Medium” or “full “ are also may be used to describe the body of the wine.”Flat “, “round” or “smooth” may be used to describe the level of acidity.
Full-bodied- Take note of how heavily or light the wine feels in your mouth . So, if it is “heavy”, the body of the wine is described as full-bodied. Full-bodied wines would be notably more concentrated.
Aftertaste – The taste left in the mouth after the wine is tasted, is aftertaste. Alsocalled as“finish”. Excellent wines have a lingering aftertaste.
Elegant –Describes a wine of beauty and grace. Stylish, not heavy.Taste and aftertaste are in full harmony.
Easy – This wine is easy to drink. Mild taste
Attack – the first taste experience
Bouquet– A wine’s bouquet is a combination of aromas: primary, secondary and tertiary. The bouquet is developed in the wine bottle itself only during the post-fermentation. A complex bouquet needs years to develop.
Bitter – Bitterness dominates the aftertaste.
Oaky– Describes the taste and aroma of oak wood. Oak flavor contributed by the oak during barrel aging.
Foxy wine– A wine making term used to describe the smell of native American grape varieties such as Concord grape.
Potential – High concentration of tannins and acid.
Corky– Smell and taste of cork dominates.
Spicy – Wine term that testers use to describe the wine which tastes like hot food.
Well-balanced- Tannins , acid, alcohol and residual sugar are well balanced.
Tannins - are skins and seeds of grapes. They produce specific astringent taste.