Remember those 10,000 different grapes we talked about at the beginning? By the time you add up all the different types of wine from all the different wineries, there are considerably more than 10,000 different varieties of wine. What is wine and how is it made?
Wine is an alcoholic beverage made from fermented grapes. Generally, yeast is added to the grape juice. Different varieties of grapes and various strains of yeast will produce different types of wine. The yeast consumes the sugar in the grape juice converting it to ethanol, carbon dioxide, and heat.
“We Have Too Much Wine”, said no one ever
Wine has been produced for thousands of years. Some wines not made from grapes are rice wine and fruit wines. Some fruits used are plum, cherry, currant, blueberries, and many more. Red wine uses the color and flavor from the grape skin. It is usually made from the dark-colored varieties of grapes. The color can go from violet to red to almost brown. White wine is generally made from only the grape juice without the skins. Wine can be categorized into basically four categories: Red, White, Rose, and Sparkling. Some add Desert Wine and a fifth one.
Further Breaking Down all the Types of Wine into Styles
In addition to different types of wines, wine can be divided into different styles. Some list the wines in nine primary or main styles. I am going to be a little more detailed and put them into about 13 different style groups. So here is that list with a short definition of each one.
- Amber Wine — Made from white wine grapes where the grape skins are not removed. Also called skin-contact wine, skin-fermented wine or amber wine.
- Aromatized Wine — A fortified wine that has been flavored with herbs, spices, fruit or other natural flavorings.
- Dessert Wine — Sweet wines typically served with dessert.
- Fortified Wine — A wine in which a distilled spirit is added. Usually, brandy is used. These include Port, Sherry, Marsala, and the aromatized wine Vermouth.
- Fruit Wine — Fermented alcoholic beverages made from a variety of base ingredients. May also have additional flavors from fruits, flowers, and herbs.
- Ice Wine — A dessert wine made with grapes that have been frozen while still on the vine. The sugars do not freeze, but the water does which results in a more concentrated juice.
- Mead Wine — An alcoholic beverage made by fermenting honey with water. Sometimes fruits, spices, grains, or hops are added for flavor.
- Red Wine — Made from dark colored grape varieties. The color can range from violet to brick red to brown. The dark color comes from fermenting the grape skins with the juice.
- Rose — Uses just some of the skins when fermenting. Not enough to be qualified as Red. Ends up being a pinkish color.
- Sparkling Wine — Has a significant amount of carbon dioxide in it to make it fizzy — champagne for example — usually a White or Rose wine.
- Straw Wine — Also called Raisin Wine. Made from grapes that have been dried to concentrate the juice.
- Table Wine — This is a wine term with two different meanings, a style of wine and a quality of level of wine classification. In the United States, it is ordinary wine, not fortified or sparkling. Usually not expensive. In Europe, it refers to the lower of two overall quality categories.
- White Wine — Fermented without the skins. Uses the non-colored pulp of the grapes which may have had a skin of any color.
You can see with all the varieties of grapes and other fruits that can be used. And then take into consideration the number of wineries there are, and the number of different blend or mixes of different jucies that are possible. The actual number of different types of wines that are made is probably not even possible to count. The only thing you can do is find one or two or a few that you like and just enjoy them.
Wine is made in numerous countries all over the world. Now you have the ability to easily drink some of the finest of those wines with the Best Wine of the Month Club available today. These wines will be shipped directly to your door each month from Direct Cellars.
Thanks for reading, Liam