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Napa Sonoma Wine Tasting Driver - Wine Tasting Room Dictionary

A Napa Valley Vineyard outside tasting venue. A Napa Sonoma Wine Tasting Driver photo.   We are Your Private Driver For Hire in the Napa and Sonoma Wine Country;    Driver For Hire;   Wine Tasting Driver;   Wine Tasting Guide;  Napa Sonoma Wine Tasting Driver.


Wine Tasting Room Dictionary
This dictionary is just meant to help those who need or want some Basic Wine Tasting Room Terminology help  It is in no way a complete Wine Dictionary. Several exist online should you need more help.

There are 4 sections to this one: Basic, Character, Taste and Smell/Nose or Aroma.

Basic Terms.

Acidity:
Describes a tart or sour taste in the mouth when total acidity of the wine is high. “Tart” and “tangy” are two descriptors for acidity.

Aftertaste:
The taste or flavors that linger in the mouth after the wine is tasted, spit or swallowed. May be “harsh,” “hot,” “soft,” “lingering,” “short,” “smooth,” or nonexistent. See also ‘Finish.’

Aroma:
Usually refers to the particular smell of the grape variety, i.e., “appley,” “raisiny,” “fresh” or “floral.”

Body:
The weight or viscosity of wine in your mouth; commonly expressed as full-bodied, medium-bodied or medium-weight, or light-bodied.

Botrytis Cinerea:
A good mold that pierces the skin of grapes and causes dehydration, resulting in natural grape juice exceptionally high in sugar. Botrytis is largely responsible for the world’s finest dessert wines.  Also known as “Noble Rot”.

Bouquet:
A tasting term used to describe the smell of the wine as it matures in the bottle.

Finish:
The taste that remains in the mouth after swallowing. A long finish indicates a wine of good quality.

Legs:
The viscous droplets that form and ease down the sides of the glass when the wine is swirled. This is an indication of the alcohol present in the wine.

Length: The amount of time the sensations of taste and aroma persist after swallowing.
Mouth feel:
The texture of the wine, how it feels in the mouth and against the tongue.

Oenophile:
A lover or connoisseur of wine

Quaffer:
A wine to drink (not sip).  To drink heartily.

*

Terms about the Character of the wine.   

Acrid:
Describes a wine with overly pronounced acidity. This is often apparent in cheap red wines.

Assertive:
Upfront, forward.  Attractive: A lighter style. Fresh, easy to drink wine.

Balanced:
Indicates that the fruit, acid, and wood flavors are in the right proportion. A wine is well balanced when none of those characteristics dominates. Wine not in balance may be “acidic,” “cloying,” “flat” or “harsh.”

Big:
A wine that is full-bodied, rich and slightly alcoholic tasting.

Character:
A wine with top-notch distinguishing qualities.

Crisp:
Denotes a fresh, young wine with good acidity.

Closed:
Describes wines that are concentrated and have character, but are shy in aroma or flavor.

Complete:
A full-bodied wine rich in extracts with a pronounced finish.

Complex:
Describes a wine that combines all flavor and taste components in harmony.

Delicate:
Used to describe light-to-medium weight wines with good flavors.

Dense:
Describes a wine that has concentrated aromas on the nose and palate, desirable in young wines.

Depth:
Describes the complexity and concentration of flavors in a wine. Generally refers to a quality wine with subtle layers of flavor that go “deep.” Opposite of ‘Shallow.’

Developed:
Refers to the maturity of a wine.

Elegant:
Describes a wine of grace, balance and beauty.

*

Terms about the Taste  of the wine.

Bite:
A marked degree of acidity or tannin. An acid grip in the finish should be more like a zestful tang and is tolerable only in a rich, full-bodied wine.

Bitter:
One of the four basic tastes. Considered a fault if the bitterness dominates the flavor or aftertaste. A trace in sweet wines may complement the flavors. In young red wines it can be a warning signal, as bitterness doesn’t always dissipate with age. A fine, mature wine should not be bitter on the palate.

Buttery:
It refers to both flavor and texture or mouth feel. Common among chardonnay, especially new world.

Chewy:
Describes rich, heavy, tannic wines that are full-bodied.

Corked:
The wine is unpleasant to taste. The flavor of the wine will typically be flat and dull.  The wine will smell of cork, it is both unpleasant to smell, slightly musty and taste.

Earthy:
Describes a wine that tastes of soil, most common in red wines. Can be used both positively (pleasant, clean quality adding complexity to aroma and flavor) and negatively (barnyardy character bordering on dirtiness).

Empty:
Flavorless and uninteresting.

Flinty:
Describe the aroma or taste of some white wines; like the odor of flint striking steel. Often used to describe Riesling.

Fruity:
Describes any quality referring to the body and richness of a wine, i.e. “appley,” “berrylike,” or “herbaceous.” Usually implies a little extra sweetness.

Finish:
The taste that remains in the mouth after swallowing. A long finish indicates a wine of good quality.

Fading:
Describes a wine that is losing color, fruit, or flavor, usually as a result of age.

Flabby:
Lacking acidity on the palate.

Flat:
Having low acidity; the next stage after flabby; or refers to a sparkling wine that has lost its bubbles.

Full-Bodied:
Fills the mouth. Opposite of ‘thin-bodied.’

Graceful:
Describes a wine that is subtly harmonious and pleasing.

Grapey:
Describes simple flavors and aromas associated with fresh table grapes.

Green:
Tasting of un-ripe fruit. Not necessarily a bad thing, especially in a Riesling.

Heady:
Used to describe the smell of a wine high in alcohol.

Herbaceous:
The taste and smell of herbs.

Murky:
Lacking brightness; turbid or swampy.

Neutral:
Describes a wine without outstanding characteristics, good or bad.

Oaky:
Describes the aroma and taste of oak.

Oxidized:
Describes stale or ‘off’ wines.

Peppery:
Describes the taste of pepper in a wine; sharper than ‘Spicy.’ Good Zinfandel often has a black pepper aroma, while Rhone Valley Syrah can have white pepper aromas.

Pedestrian:
Plain.

Potent:
Describes a strong, intense, powerful wine.

Robust:
Describes a full-bodied, intense and vigorous wine.

Round:
Describes a well-balanced wine in fruit, tannins and body.

Seductive:
A wine that is appealing.

Short:
Describes a wine that does not remain on the palate after swallowing. Common in inexpensive wines, but not necessarily a fault.

Simple:
Describes a wine with few characteristics that follow the initial impression. Not necessarily unfavorable; often describes an inexpensive, young wine.

Soft:
Describes a wine with low acid/tannin, or alcohol content with little impact on the palate.

Supple:
Describes a wine with well-balanced tannins and fruit characteristics.

Thin:
Lacking body and depth.

Spicy:
Describes the presence of spice flavors such as anise, cinnamon, cloves, mint and pepper, often present in complex wines.

Sweet:
One of the four basic tastes. Describes the presence of residual sugar and/or glycerin.

Tannin:
Describes a dry sensation, with flavors of leather and tea.

Tart:
Sharp-tasting because of acidity. See also ‘Acidic.’

Toasty:
Describes a hint of the wooden barrel. Usually associated with dry white wines.

Velvety:
Having rich flavor and a silky texture.

Zesty:
A wine that’s invigorating.

*

Terms about the Smell/Nose or Aroma of the wine.

Barnyardy:
Smell of earth, truffle, and wet leaves.

Corked:
The wine smells of cork, it is unpleasant to smell and taste

Dirty:
Covers any and all foul, rank, off-putting smells that can occur in a wine, including
\those caused by bad barrels or corks. A sign of poor wine making.

Musty:
Having a moldy smell.

Oaky:
Describes the aroma and taste of oak.

Oxidized:
Describes stale or ‘off’ wines.

Perfumed:
Refers to a delicate bouquet.

Smoky:
Describes a subtle wood-smoke aroma. Attributable to barrel fermenting or aging.

Toasty:
Describes a hint of the wooden barrel. Usually associated with dry white wines.

*

Wine Tasting Excursion Tips:
Place your deli orders ahead of time and avoid the long lines of the Lunch Crush.

Remember to Hydrate with good old H2O, during your Wine Tasting Excursions and
you will feel better for it at the end of the day.

Do not over power the smell of the wine with your lovely scent in the tasting rooms.
Other Wine Tasters will really appreciate you for it.

Be sure to have a great & safe time on your visit.

Thank You,
The Napa Sonoma Wine Tasting Driver

We are your Private Driver For Hire in Napa and Sonoma.


AKA:
Napa Wine Tour Driver, Sonoma Wine Tour Driver, Napa Wine Tasting Driver, Sonoma Wine Tasting Driver, Wine Tasting Guide Driver, Wine Tasting Driver, Wine Tasting Guide, Professional Driver For Hire, Private Driver For Hire, Personal Driver For Hire.

All Photos are Property of  Napa Sonoma Wine Tasting Driver. We are your Private Driver For Hire in Napa and Sonoma.


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