Wine (from Latin vinum) is an alcoholic beverage made from grapes, generally Vitis vinifera, fermented without the addition of sugars, acids, enzymes, water, or other nutrients. Yeast consumes the sugar in the grapes and converts it to ethanol and carbon dioxide ( Wikipedia).
Wines are also made from rice and fruits such as plum, cherry, pomegranate and elderberry.
6 criteria for judging a good wine:
- Balance: There must be relationship of four components — sweetness, acidity, tannin, and alcohol. Nothing should stick out as you taste it, like harsh tannin or too much sweetness.
- Length: You can taste it across the full length of your tongue — rather than stopping short halfway. Generally, high alcohol or excess tannin will not go long way on your palate.
- Depth: This is subjective, unmeasurable attribute of a high-quality wine. We say a wine has depth when it seems to have a dimension of verticality — that is, it does not taste flat and one-dimensional in your mouth. A “flat” wine can never be great.
- Complexity: A wine that keeps revealing different things about itself, always showing you a new flavor or impression — a wine that has complexity — is usually considered better quality.
- Finish: In a good wine, you can still perceive the wine’s flavors — such as fruitiness or spiciness — in the back of your mouth and in your throat.
- Typicity: So you have to know the textbook characteristics of wines made from the major grape varieties and wines of the world’s classic wine regions. For example, the Cabernet Sauvignon grape typically has an aroma and flavor of blackcurrants, and the French white wine called Pouilly-Fumé typically has a slight gunflint aroma.
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