The kosher wine connoisseur
Strange Wine Descriptions... What does it mean when
a wine has 'banana tastes' or 'nutty overtones'? How could a wine be
honey-like? Why do pepper and chocolate and blackberry and gooseberry
get mentioned on the back of wine labels? Are there really currants
and strawberries and peaches and butter and vanilla in wine?
I thought wine was made from grapes!
The point here is interesting. While various grapes
are certainly the dominant element in all wines, vintners search for
ways to make their wine (whether it be a Chardonnay
or a Cabernet Sauvignon) different from
the wines of all other vintners. Soil, climate, location, sun, water,
and the aging process, these all determine the taste of the grape and
the quality of the wine, but vintners look for something more.
As a result, all wines contain chemical compounds that
actually resemble, or are identical to, many fruits, nuts and other
flavors. So it should be no surprise that some reviewers latch on to
these 'flavor words' as they try to best convey and describe the various
Are the actual fruits, berries, spices themselves ever
mixed-in with the grapes? Of course not!
A reviewer is often stuck trying to describe the attributes of wines
and needs to rely on tastes and textures that are most familiar to
the readers and to other wine tasters. These descriptions act as markers
for the reviewer. They allow for comparisons and contrasts between
different wines and serve as a way to remember a wine from year to
year and vineyard to vineyard.
What happens if you don't taste those same nutty textures, don't smell
that pungent fruit, don't feel the cinnamony texture?
Relax. Enjoy the wine. Rely on your own taste buds.
Back to History of Wine page
© 2001-2003 All
Holy Land Wines.com - all rights reserved!