Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Nice Legs! Wine Lingo 101

There’s quite an array of terminology to describe a drink that is essentially fermented grape juice. Some of them are less obvious than others, and some sound like they were made up by someone who had already started on the wine. So, here are some of the basic terms you might hear if you hang out around seasoned wine drinkers. 

Acidity: the right amount of acidity gives wine a crisp, refreshing taste. Too much and you’ll feel like you’re drinking sour patch kids.

Appellation: a geographic region where grapes are grown. 

Aroma: specific scents you can pick up after sniffing a glass of wine, such as peach, cherry, or blackberry. The aroma depends heavily on the grapes used.  

Body: the fullness, density, or weight of a wine in your mouth. 

Bouquet: the overall smell of the wine, usually reserved for older wines that have been aged in oak barrels.

Brix: a fancy scientific scale used the measure the sugar content of unfermented grapes. The higher the Brix, the higher the alcohol content will be.

Dry: the opposite of sweet, not the opposite of wet. 

Legs: the streaks that a wine leaves after swirling it around in your glass. Lighter-bodied wines will have thinner legs that dissipate quickly, while full-bodied wines cling to the inside of the glass.

I'll be adding more terms in a future post, and eventually compiling a separate page of wine terms. Until then, go impress people with your fabulous new wine vocabulary. 

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