Have you ever stood in a liquor store staring at a wall of wine bottles with no clue which one you should choose? What about sitting in a restaurant looking at the wine list and listening to the waiter talk about the wines and you feel like he’s speaking a foreign language. There is so much Wine Information in so many different places that sometimes you don’t know which way to turn.
If that sounds like a situation you have been in, then you’ve come to the right place. I’ve been in those situations, and frankly, it’s scary and even embarrassing that you know so little about wine. You’ve found a friend here because I’m going to try and help.
It All Starts With Grapes
There are over 10,000 varieties of wine grapes in the world. And they are developing new strains all the time. Certain species are popular in certain countries, and some of them are very localized to a region. Some varieties of grapes make specific wines with the same name: Riesling, Chardonnay, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, to list a few of the more popular ones.
Many factors affect the taste of the grape and the taste of the wine it makes. Besides the variety, of course, a big factor is how it is grown. Things like the geographic area, climate, and weather, environment, sunlight, the soil it is grown in will all affect the grape and the wine it produces. Another factor that affects the final taste of wine is human intervention: the time of harvest will modify the sugar content and flavor profile, how it is aged – in barrels or not and even what kind of wood the barrel is made of.
How Many Different Kinds of Wine Can There Be
Remember those 10,000 different grapes? Well, they probably turn into more than 10,000 different wines by the time you count all the varieties made by all of the wineries in the world. Wine information is available from many places like the internet, of course, the wineries that produce it, a good wine store if they have knowledgeable staff, books, magazines, television, and many more. Some wines are named for the grape variety that was used to make it, some have unique names from each of the wineries that produce it, and some are blends of many different grapes. Eating Well Magazine listed the five most popular wines as 1.) Pinot Grigio, 2.) Chardonnay, 3.) Pinot Noir, 4.) Rose, 5.) Cabernet Sauvignon.
The five categories wine can be placed into are Red, White, Rose, Sparkling, and Desert; then each of those five categories is broken down into two to three subcategories. For example, Red has fruity dry red, sweet red, and herbal dry red; while White has dry white and sweet white. Those subcategories are then broken down again another one or two levels. I have seen others break down all the different varieties differently, but for now, this should give you a beginning basic understanding of them.
Which Kind To Serve and When and How
Did you know there are different styles (shapes and sizes) of glasses for different types of wine? We will get into this more on another page. Wine should be served slightly chilled. Red should be between 53-69°, White is best between 44-57°, and the Sparkling varieties 38-45°. These are the temperatures that bring out the best flavor of each wine. But I would recommend to drink it at whatever temperature you prefer. I have had wine at room temperature to ice cold out of the freezer, from iced when served as a punch to warm with some spice added. Go with whatever you prefer, what fits the occasion, and sometimes anyway you can. Here is a tip, if you are drinking an “affordable” wine serving it slightly chilled will help to cover some of the “not as good” aromas.
Fun Facts and Future Topics
Here are some other little facts that we will get into more in the future on this site. Red wine will usually taste better if decanted – meaning poured out of the bottle into a wine serving container. The usual serving size for a glass of wine is 5-6 ounces. Wine does not store well (if at all) after opening. Properly opening a bottle of wine is an art. There are correct ways to pour your wine and even the way you hold your glass. There is more to learn then you were probably thinking but don’t worry, it is not as bad as it may sound right now. We will get through it and enjoy some wine along the way. We will be adding new information all the time so come back often to check it out.
“The discovery of a wine is of greater moment than the discovery of a constellation. The universe is too full of stars.” ― Benjamin Franklin, circa the 1700s
Sit down, relax and enjoy a glass of fine wine. Did you know you can have wine shipped right to your home each month? You will be able to use all the new Wine Information you have learned to enjoy it even more. You can get more information on the page The Best Wine Club.