Choosing the perfect wine requires a certain level of skill and knowledge about the wine world. Wine enthusiasts take their passion for wine very seriously, as one should. To become a wine connoisseur, there are a few basic rules one should know. Here are a few helpful tips that will make you a pro at picking the perfect wine.
- Understand Wine Terminology
To be able to distinguish good wines from bad ones, you first need to know the language of wine. Understanding wine terminology will make it easier to identify what qualities you’re looking for in a wine and if the standard is met. Irrespective of your preferences, since good wine is a subjective taste, there are certain factors that you can go by to assess the quality of a wine. The first is sweetness. Wines labeled as sweet and semi-sweet have a sugary aftertaste to them. Dry wines, on the other hand, do not have any sweetness at all. Acidity is another factor to consider. Richer or rounder wines tend to have less acidity, and the ones with more acidity are tart.
The alcohol percentage present in the wine can also have an impact on its flavor. Measured in ABV (alcohol by volume), alcohol content determines how warm wine is. Wines generally contain 11 to 14 percent of alcohol, but some can as much as 20 percent or as low as 5 percent. Next is the body of the wine, which refers to the fullness of the wine, or how light or heavy it feels in your mouth. For instance, red wines have a fuller body than white wines. Lastly, there is the component of Tannins, phenolic compounds present in grape skin. Tannins when naturally present in or artificially added to the wine-making process, make the wine dry and bitter. Aged wines tend to have higher Tannin levels. One shouldn’t get confused with the dryness of the wine, which refers to the sweetness levels of wine.
- Wine Type
Once you’ve figured out your wine preferences, you need to be able to pick out what type of wine you want. There are 8 main categories of wine: Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah (full-bodied red wines), Zinfandel (medium body red wine), Pinot Noir (light-bodied dry red wine), Chardonnay (full-bodied white dry wine), Sauvignon Blanc (dry light to medium body white wine), Pinot Gris (light-bodied dry white wine), and Riesling (sweet an acidic white wine).
While these are the general categories, a wide variety of factors influence the flavor of the wine. You can book the Asheville winery tours which detail all the factors that determine a wine’s quality and flavor while taking its guests on a splendid wine tour. From where the grapes were grown and the amount of water they received to the type of soil they were grown in and how they were harvested, every step of the wine-making process may bear alterations, changing the end product’s taste. So, you might be surprised how different a Pinot Noir from France will taste from one bought in Australia.
- Learn what Works for you
If you are new to the wine world, the best way to find out what you like is by sorting through different wines and seeing which one alights your taste buds. Another way to figure out your taste is by comparing your general food and drink preferences. Your taste in food can heavily determine what type of wine you’d like. For instance, a sweet tooth is more likely to enjoy a sweet wine than a dry one. On the other hand, a person who loves black coffee will lean more towards acidic wines that have a refined tart taste to offer.
- Flavor Pairings
Every occasion and flavor profile has the perfect wine to accompany it. Learning how to pair different wines with their complementary foods is crucial to being able to pick out the perfect wine. Pairing wines and food isn’t an easy skill to learn and sometimes even throws professionals off. But there are a few basic rules you can follow to make the pairing process easier. It is an unspoken rule that white wine always goes with fish and white meats while red wines go with red meats. The fullness of the dish also correlates to how heavy the wine needs to be. Light dishes like salads go better with light body wines while full body wines go better with heavy and filling wines.
Following these tips will certainly make it easier for you to become a pro at wine picking. While you may not get it on the first try, with more experience you will get better at it. So, keep the helpful tips we’ve given you in mind for when you next go wine shopping.