Many wine purists (aka “snobs”) believe that proper glassware is essential to the enjoyment of wine. This is just not true. Sure there is glassware that can be considered better than others. Those that help to enhance the overall wine drinking experience by intensifying aromas and tastes. That is precisely the reason why certain wine glasses look and feel different depending on the type/style of wine they were made for… Featured Regions
Of the approximately 10,000 documented grape varieties; 180 are made into wine. Out of those you’ve likely heard of a few varietal wines just by visiting your local supermarket. For those who haven’t, or those who want to learn more, here are some short definitions and defining characteristics for some of the more common varietals and grapes. Keep in mind, most American wines are identified by their varietal name, while in Europe, it is more common for wines to be associated with and named after the region in which they were produced.
Serving And Storing
One of the greatest wine killers is soap. Dish detergent often leaves a film that cannot be seen. When wine comes in contact with this film it will negatively affect the taste and smell of the wine. When dining out smell the glasses before the wine is poured. If you can smell soap ask for the glasses to be rinsed again. When washing your own glasses rinse well with plain hot water. Water itself can leave odors behind, so you may want to use a filter on your water faucet to prevent sulfur or chlorine odors depending on the condition of your source.
Wine and Food
When you drink wine by itself it tastes one way, but when you take a bite of food, the wine tastes different. This is because wine is like a spice. Elements in the wine interact with the food to provide a different taste sensation. So, when making a food and wine match, think about the four basic taste components your tongue recognizes: salty, sweet, bitter, and sour. How the food tastes, on this very basic level, can dictate a good wine selection for your meal.
Wine Term Glossary
Acidity: Acidity in a wine can preserve the wine’s freshness and keep the wine lively, making it enjoyable to drink. Often recognized as the tart taste in wine. Wines from hot years tend to be lower in acidity, whereas wines from cool, rainy years tend to be high in acidity. Too much acidity can make a wine taste sour.