WINE 101

Glossary

More: Glossary and List of Terms

WORD DEFINITION
Aging the process of keeping wine at the proper tempature and humidity to allow it to reach it’s fullest potential
Apertif The french word used in a general way to describe almost any alcoholic beverage consumed before a meal to “whet” the appetite
Appellation controlee two words seen on (almost) French wine meaning “controlled Place name” used as a guide to the origin and quthenticity of the wine whose label bears those names
Blending mixing wines from different grape varities, different origins, different vintages, or similar wines with differing characteristics
Blush wines whose color varies from pale pink to dark pink and are simple, light-bodied, and somewhat sweet
Bouquet the smell of a wine
Breathing aerating wine before drinking it – best done by decanting
Chateau synonymous with vineyard
Cru the french word meaning growth, and A specific vineyard
Domaine french word for estate
Enology the science of wine production from harvest to bottling
Hybrid the result of a cross between two different grape varities
Late harvest used to describe wines made from especially ripe grapes or from grapes infested with noble rot
Micro climate refers to the combination of soil, altitude, angle of slope, drainage, orientation of the sun and their influences on wine quality
Napa most popular wine region in california
Noble rot “BOtrytis cinerea” a beneficial mold responsible for the taste of some wines most notably sauternes. the mold forms on the skins of ripe grapes under specific conditions – humidity alternating with dry heat – sending filaments into the grapes, perforating the skin
Oak the one wood in which wine can be counted on to imporve and is used for small to medium containers such as barrels, casks, pipes
phylloxera a devastating insect which destroys grape crops
Reserve word used on wine labels with no legal meaning
Sediment deposit most red wines throw as they age in the bottle, not to be confused with cloudiness, haziness, or lack of clarity
Tannin a group of non-organic compounds, known as phenolic compounds, that exist in bark, wood, roots, seeds and stems of plants. in red wines, they are extracted from skins, seed, and possibly stems during fermentation and they impart structure, flavor, texture, and complexitity. since it is also an antioxidant, it also enables a wine to age
Vinifera the most important ot the 40 odd species that make up the genus vitis. named “wine bearer”, vitis vinifera is responsible for almost all of the world’s finest wine
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