Though selecting a wine seems like an easy process, the truth is, one should have a broad knowledge about the available wine selections to end up with the best. There are a number of factors that directly influence the type of wine that should be paired on a particular type of food or meal. That being said, having basic knowledge about wine in general will always come in handy. Keep in mind that each type of wine created has its own characteristics. Some are made to be sweeter, while others may feature a more subtle taste.
One of the most important factors that greatly affect the taste of a wine is the type of grapes used to make it. Meanwhile, the wine’s flavor is influenced by the way the grapes are handled and fermented, the yeast used as well as exposure to sunlight.
Generally speaking, there are two basic types of wines – the white wine and the red wine. When making white wines, only the clear juice of the grapes is used, but any type of grapes (regardless of the color) can be used to produce it. Meanwhile, in making red wines, the skin, stems and seeds of the red or black grapes are also included, which gives it its distinctive color. What you should know is that red wines are usually made to be heavier while white wines are normally much sweeter. Both these types of wines can be categorized further as either Dry or Sweet.
To help you choose the best type of wine that will utterly suit your taste, here are some of the important factors that you have to carefully evaluate.
Acidity: Various types of acids are present in wines, whether it is the Bordeaux 2010 or a Merlot 2008. These acids are responsible for the taste and the longevity of the wine. High acidity can make a wine taste more sour and tart. Meanwhile, lower wine acidity often results to a flat and dull taste. If the right quantity of acid is present in a wine, it can make its flavor stand out. The acids basically give the wine that bracing, crispy, sharp or refreshing flavor.
Tannin: This is an important ingredient when making wines, particularly the red wines. Tannins found in young wines usually taste bitter while those found in aged wines offer a more subtle flavor.
Alcohol Content: Whether you are buying a Brunello 2006 or a Cabernet Sauvignon 2009, it is important that you check the wine’s label to know how much alcohol is in it. The percentage of alcohol present indicates the body of the wine. For instance, alcohol content between 7.5% and 10.5% indicate a light body. Medium body wines, on the other hand, usually contain 10.5% – 12.5% alcohol. Those with 12.5% and more alcohol content are considered as full-bodied wines, which simply mean that they have very high alcohol content.
Checking out reviews and ratings of credible and popular wine critics, like the James Suckling’s Wine Ratings, can greatly help you narrow down your wine choices. Information provided by famous wine critics will allow you to find the best type of wine according to taste, year and flavor.