PDF 100 Essential Wine Facts

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Many of the largest names in champagne produce non-vintage bottles. Some argue that this preserves freshness and fruitiness.


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There are usually 12 bottles in a case of wine. There are around 1, varieties of grape that are used to produce wine. Grapes contain damascenone , a smell compound that contributes floral notes to many wines. The majority of grapevines used for winemaking are variants of the Vitis Vinifera species.


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Master of Wine Andrea Robinson identifies six wine grapes that you should know when starting out. They are:. Pinot Noir. A white grape grown in Germany and the French region of Alsace, Riesling is becoming more and more popular for its ability to age and its versatility. Sauvignon Blanc. Its zesty, grassy flavour makes it one of the most popular white wine varieties in the world.

A 75cl bottle contains about six glasses worth of wine , or 12 smaller glasses for tastings. A fining agent like egg or fish bladder is used to soften astringency from tannins and remove sediment. Malolatic fermentation occurs during the winemaking process, converting sharp malic acid into softer, more palatable lactic acid.

Tannins are the substance in red wine that give it a bitter, sometimes astringent feel in the mouth. They are transferred to the grape juice when it comes into contact with the skins and seeds early in the winemaking process. Younger red wines are generally more tannic than their older counterparts.

Top 10 Wines of 2018 - Wine Spectator Top 100 List - The Barron Report LIVE

As red wines age, they also become lighter in colour. As a general rule, white wines should be served from five to twelve degrees celsius depending on their characteristics, while reds should be between ten and eighteen degrees. Experts only fill their wine glasses a third of the way. This leaves plenty of room in the glass for aromas to develop. Start by looking at the colour, then smell before you taste. Decanting red wine before serving can mimic the ageing process, allowing oxygen to flood into the liquid and develop its flavour. Oak imparts buttery vanilla flavours to a wine when it is aged in barrels.

When chilling a wine, adding water to an ice bucket increases the surface area contact between a bottle and the cold, bringing the temperature down faster. There are four tasting elements to look for when sampling wine: acidity, sweetness, tannins and alcohol content. Moving the wine around in your mouth when tasting allows all of your taste receptors to fire. Sweetness is detected at the tip of the tongue, bitterness at the back and sourness on the sides.

Experts Jancis Robinson and Kevin Zraly both say that only around ten percent of bottles benefit from aging. Most should be enjoyed within five years. Storing wine bottles horizontally is best. It keeps the cork damp and prevents too much air from entering the bottle. Screw Caps were popularised by Australian and New Zealand winemakers, who were not satisfied with the quality of the corks they were being given.

Wines sealed by cork still make up the majority of bottles in the world at 64 percent. Storing wine away from direct light and heat preserves its freshness.

A 75cl bottle of wine contains the juice of to grapes. Biodynamic winemakers are notorious for their unusual practices , which involve planning harvests around planetary movement and burying cow horns full of manure to create supercharged fertilizer. Some flaws are the result of bad winemaking, while others are caused by bad corks or poor storage.

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Fun, Unique & Amusing Facts About Wine

If you are ordering a bottle of wine in a restaurant, you want to be certain that the wine you receive tastes the way it was intended to taste. You are ultimately the one who will be asked to approve the bottle. Being able to sniff out common faults, such as a damp, musty smell from a tainted cork called TCA, will certainly make it easier for you to send a wine back. You can explore everything from Chardonnay to Viognier and Cabernet Sauvignon to Zinfandel in our guide to the most important red wine grapes and white wine grapes.

Wine is made in virtually every country in the world. These regions tend to have hotter climates and generally use different labeling methods ; they tend to use grapes rather than region on labels for recognition. At first glance, a wine label can be confusing to those just getting started.

Luckily, New World wine producers have made it easier on wine beginners by listing the grape s directly on the label. Old World regions have typically relied on the wine consumer to be familiar enough with the region to know, for example, that Red Burgundy is Pinot Noir. The wine from Napa , California, on the other hand, lists both the region and the grape variety. Old World wine producers are slowly realizing that in order to compete on the global market, they need to make it easy on the consumer.

But as much as times may change, a deep understanding of how to read a wine label will always be a useful skill.

Wine Basics

There are a few important components of a wine label. We live in an age in which sourcing wine has never been easier. Looking for a wine from Crete? The wine shop in your town will likely carry it, and if not, you can easily find a wine retailer online. Savvy shoppers will stay on top of ever-changing wine shipping l aws based on interstate policies. Some states cannot have wine shipped to them, while others have more relaxed laws.

Bordeaux wine

When dining out with friends or at a party, be open minded! A rich Cabernet Sauvignon might woo you initially, but you may also take a liking to exotic Rieslings depending on your mood. There is no better way to discover wine than by tasting everything. For starters, make sure that your wine is being served at its absolute best. To do that, pay attention to these three tenets of wine service: Glassware , temperature and preservation. Glassware Each wine has something unique to offer your senses. Most wine glasses are specifically shaped to accentuate those defining characteristics, directing wine to key areas of the tongue and nose, where they can be fully enjoyed.

While wine can be savored in any glass, a glass designed for a specific wine type helps you to better experience its nuances. Outfit your house with a nice set of stems you will reap the rewards. Temperature All wine is stored at the same temperature, regardless of its color.

Where White Wine Comes From

The ability of your body to use the antioxidants reaches a plateau after two glasses of wine. Red Wine Headaches Many casual and daily wine drinkers have from time to time suffered from red wine headaches. While most consumers believe this is caused by an allergic reaction to sulfites in wine, that is not the case.


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Reactions to the Histamines found in wine have been proven to be the cause of the problem. Level of alcohol in red wine: While there are some probable healthy reasons to enjoy wine, wine has calories and alcohol. Alcohol is perhaps the key component in a wine, without it, we would be drinking juice.

The percentage of alcohol in red wine varies quite a bit. Percentage of alcohol in white wine: For dry white wines, the level of alcohol is amazingly diverse, depending on the grape varietal and region where the wine was produced. For sweet, white wines, the level of alcohol differs considerably, depending on the grape and where the wine was produced ranging from However, some sweet wines are considerably lower, for example, Essencia from Tokaji, which has most of the alcohol fermented out. In that case, the wine will be lower in alcohol, but much higher in calories. All wine labels are required to state the level of alcohol.

But they are not required to be accurate. Depending on the labeling law of the country, the information on the label can vary by an average of 1. For current vintages, as an average, levels of alcohol stated are more often apt to be higher than what is listed on the label for tax purposes. Sugar content in wine: While wine is packed with all the good things we mentioned, the truth is, wine is mostly water.