Choose A High Quality Wine

Clearly the selection of a certain type, year and brand of wine is a question of individual taste. Nonetheless, within the confines of price, there are some general principles about which most wine drinkers are in agreement.

Fortunatey the rise in the number of of vineyards throughout the world and of wine-related websites means that the availability of wine is now relatively easy. A person in Arkansas or Brussels can purchase a New Zealand Syrah which is not stocked by your local merchant as easily as someone in Christchurch.

Setting aside the subject of pairing wines with food, are you looking for a red wine or a white wine? Some say that Madeira is too heavy while other people find that a German Riesling is much too dry. Most easily available wines are meant to be consumed a relatively short time after purchase, however those people who wish to drink the finest wine will need to be patient. Cabernet Sauvignon would doubtless be much better after it has matured.

A cool climate Chardonnay, such as those from Canada, will interest those who enjoy a young wine with prominent acidity and also to those people who want to experience it's nut and honey flovor which comes with aging.

It might also be of assistance to view wines according to their class. Class 1 wines, which are normally labeled 'Light Wine' or 'Red Table Wine' will have an alcohol content of between 7% and 14% by volume. Wines in Class 7, on the other hand, will have an alcohol content of not lower than 15% by volume. Class 7 wines have generally had Brandy added to then and possibly flavored using herbs with wines with the greatest concentration being referred to as 'fortified'.

Scan the label for a declaration of the quantity of sulfites in a wine. It is normal practice to add sulphur during the winemaking process to guard against the growth of unwanted organisms, but some winemakers add more than many wine drinkers like. Sulphur dioxide is also sometimes sprayed onto the grapes themselves as a form of pest control and may find its way into the skin. A small number of drinkers are sensitive to sulfites and will experience an allergic reaction. Concentrations of below 10 parts per million are normally fine for most wine drinkers.

Whenever you are trying a wine you should start by cooling it to the proper temperature of around 65F (18C) for reds and 52F (11C) in the case of whites and use a thin rimmed glass which is free from dust.

Pour no more than about one third of a glass and pick up your glass by the stem to avoid getting fingerprints on the rim and warming the bowl.

What you want to see is a clear color when a wine is viewed against a white background with a wine like a Pinot Noir displaying a light ruby color and a Cabernet Sauvignon being a darker violet color. Wines which are made from grapes grown in hot summers and dry falls will show a darker color than those wines produced during a cool summer and wet fall.

The final test is to move the wine slowly around so that it coats the sides of the glass and sample its aroma before tasting it.

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About The Author, Donald Saunders
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