Descriptive Words for Wine

Topics: Wine, Fermentation, Chardonnay Pages: 11 (2757 words) Published: May 13, 2013

Wine tasting, as a production control technique, depends upon converting into words the impression created by the reaction of the wine on the taster's palate. In order that one wine, tasted by several individuals, be reported in the same way by each, it is necessary that all of the tasters use the same words for the separate palate impressions the wine creates. The terms used in sensory examination fall naturally under the four headings of appearance, color, taste and odor.

I.APPEARANCE: The appearance of a wine is judged upon whether or not the wine seems clear or contains sediment or suspended material of a colloidal or larger particle size.

Brilliant: wines free of any visible solids and having a sparkling clarity. Clear: wines free of any visible solids but lacking the sparkling clarity of brilliant wines. Dull: wines having an easily seen, distinct colloidal haze, but are free of visible suspended material. Cloudy: wines containing large amounts of colloidal material or of suspended particles. Precipitated: wines containing non-colloidal material of crystalline or amorphous nature which may settle out as a visible deposit leaving the wine relatively clear.

II.COLOR: Wines obtain their color from the presence of flavonoid compounds that are present in the skins and flesh of the grapes.

A.White Wines: contain several flavonoids which have been definitely identified. The interaction of oxygen with these substances, especially in the presence of trace amounts of metallic ions produces materials having amber or brown colors. Terms used in describing the colors of white wine follows.

1.Almost colorless or very light straw
2.Light yellow or light straw with or without a greenish tint 3.Medium yellow
4.Light gold
5.Medium gold

B.Amber Wines: Wines containing varying amounts of brown color modifying the yellow, are amber colored. Amber-colored white wines usually result from the action of oxygen on the wines and consequently an amber color in white table wines indicates over aging, over-aeration, heating or the use of over-ripe grapes. Terms used in describing the colors of amber wines follow:

1.Light amber
2.Medium amber
3.Dark amber - This is an uncommon shade in California wines except for sweet Vermouths, which also have slight reddish tint. California Tokays may also belong in this group. C.Red Wines: The color of red wines results from the presence of anthocyanins. In the vinifera grape the principal anthocyanin is malvidin monoglucoside. Differences in the reddish hue, of course, result from the presence of other anthocyanins in varying amounts and from the fact that the color of the anthocyanins varies with the hydrogen ion concentration of the wine. Oxygen, as in the case of white wines, also affects the color of red wines by producing brown-colored oxidation products. Red wine colors are described by the following terms:

1.Pink or Rosé: Wines containing only a small amount of the anthocyanins have a pink color. Most genuine rosé wines fall in this group. An orange tint modifying the pink results from over aging or over oxidation.

2.Light Red: The depth of this color is above that accepted for rosé wines but lighter than most of the standard types of red wines.

3.Medium Red: The depth of this color applies to most California standard red wines.

4.Dark Red: This color is characteristic of red wines used mainly for blending purposes. They frequently have a blue or purple tint.

5.Tawny Color: Red wines when aged for a long time, when heated or when over-oxidized, acquire a color that is a mixture of brown with the red of the original. It is characteristic of tawny ports.

III.ODOR: The odors of a wine...
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