Tasting Terms 

How to talk about wine

Souzão

A wine grape from Portugal that is used in the production of port wine. Also planted in Australia and used as a blending grape for port-style...

Cold Maceration

Before fermentation grapes are cold soaked or steeped to extract color and flavor from the grape skins. Further extraction occurs during fermentation....

Stelvin© Closure

A brand name of screw caps specifically designed for wine bottles. Stelvin© closures include the bottle neck finish. https://www.amcor.com/stelvin

Flavour Intensity

How strong or light the flavour is perceived in your mouth. High intensity flavour may be described as robust.

Viognier

The classic white grape of the northern Rhone Valley of France where it makes the expensive wine known as Condrieu. Now also made in California...

Vermouth

A wine based beverage that originated in Italy and is often served as an aperitif.

Veraison

The stage when grapes begin to gain colour and soften.

Vendimia

The Spanish word for vintage, harvest or year of production. Also see, cosecha

Varietal

Refers to the variety of grape used in a wine after it has been bottled. A varietal wine is made from one type of grape while a blend uses several...

Trockenbeerenauslese (TBA)

One of the Pradikate of the Q.m.P. as defined by German Wine Law, literally meaning ‘selected dried berries’. Premium German sweet wine. Generally...

Terroir

French language term for all the characteristics of the vineyard site thought to be imparted to a particular wine. It is a term that includes...

Tafelwein

German for “table wine”.

Sur Lie

This practice began in Burgundy with Chardonnay. When it is written on a wine that it is aged sur lie (French for “on the lees”) it means that...

Super Tuscan

A red wine from Tuscany that is not made in accordance with established DOC rules. Often a blended wine of superior quality containing Cabernet...

Sulphites/Sulfites

Amino acids that result from the breakdown of proteins during fermentation. They may also be added during the wine-making process. Some people...

Still Wines (Non-Sparkling)

Wines with no carbonation. Still wine can be red, white and rosé and have all levels of sweetness from dry (no residual sugar) to semisweet and...

Sommelier

French term for a wine steward.

Sinewy

Usually referring to a wine with not much fruitiness, but a good balance of alcohol and acidity.

Sediment

Small particles, mostly of colour, that drop out of suspension as a wine ages. Sediment is harmless and wine can still be drunk. With considerable...

Rhine

Famous river in Germany. Wines produced in the wine region near or around it have that name on the bottle as the designation of origin.

Raw

A good descriptor for wines sampled straight from the barrel. It refers to the fact that the wine is young and undeveloped. Raw wines are often...

Rainwater

The name of a medium-dry style of Madeira wine. The origin of this wine is a little sketchy but thought to have come from 18th century England.

Pruning

The vineyard chore of trimming back the vines.

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