Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Wine Lingo, Part 2

Happy Wine Wednesday! As promised, here is a continuation of my previous post on wine terms. 

Finish: the lingering flavour and sensation of the wine after drinking. It can be short, long, dry, complex…you get the idea.

Ice wine, or “Icewine”: a sweet dessert wine made from frozen grapes. They can be red or white depending on the grapes used. Ice wines are usually a fair bit more expensive than other wines because of the strict conditions required to make them, but it's worth it. 

Nose: the overall smell or aroma of the wine. 

Sugar scale: a numerical system used to describe how dry or sweet a wine tastes, with 0 being the most dry. This system is being phased out and replaced with the more vague qualitative categories of extra dry, dry, off-dry, medium sweet, and sweet. 

From the LCBO website. 

Tannins: more common in reds, tannins are what make your mouth pucker after taking a sip and make a wine taste more dry or bitter. Tannins come from contact with the grapes’ seeds, skins, stems, and sometimes wooden barrels that the wine is aged in.

Varietal: the type of grape (or grapes, if it's a blend) used in a wine. Different appellations are conducive to growing different kinds of grapes, which is why some areas are known for a certain type of wine.

Vintage: the year the grapes were harvested in. Not all wines specify the vintage, because sometimes they use grapes from different years and hope that no one will notice the difference. 

VQA (Canada only): stands for Vintner’s Quality Alliance. In Ontario, a VQA wine must use 100% Ontario grapes and jump through a series of hoops before they get to put a special sticker on the bottle. 

I'll keep adding terms as I think of them. Next up: a review of the brand new Trius White 2012!

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