Profile cover photo
Profile photo
Vino 100 White Plains
5 followers
5 followers
About
Posts

Vino 100 is your one stop shop for wine! Stop in today!
Add a comment...

Post has attachment
We are the best wine shop in the area!
Photo
Add a comment...

Post has attachment
Did you know that if you join our wine club you automatically get to try new wines every month?
Photo
Add a comment...

Post has attachment
Please help us get voted best wine shop! Last year we made it to the final round!
Add a comment...

Post has attachment
Join us for our 11th Annual Grand Tasting on December 3rd from noon to 5!
Photo
Add a comment...

Post has attachment
Shop our wine online and get 10% off all orders $150 or more when you use code VINO10% at checkout!
Add a comment...

Post has attachment
Shop our wines!
Add a comment...

Fruity, Sweet and Dry

There is much confusion over the terms dry, sweet and fruity with regards to wine. It’s amazing how these seemingly three simple terms cause so much consternation.

Part of the problem is that there are so many types of wine, different varietals, blends and even fluxuations in flavors within wines from the same grape.

Let’s start out with what dry really means in wine. Dryness is often based on alcohol level. Drier wines often contain a higher alcohol percentage. However, while this may technically be true, lighter, fruitier tasting wines like Pinot Noir for example can have a relatively high alcohol level but not come across as dry.

And some heavier, high alcohol wines like Zinfandel or Shiraz are often referred to as fruity or…dare I say it…sweet. Yes, dryness can be confusing, and when you add in things like tannins or oak aging this can also add to uncertainty.

Tannins, the phenolic compounds derived from the skin, seeds and stems of the grapes, add character to wine and create that fuzzy, cottonmouth feeling you get from red wine. Tannin can make even a fruity wine seem drier from it’s effects. Oak aging can increase this tendency since the oak can increase the perception of dryness in wine.

On the opposite spectrum is sweet. Easy enough, sweet wine has residual sugar (RS) left from the fermentation process. Easily detected in dessert wines, very slight RS levels can add a fruity, sweetness to dry wines that takes the edge off of the tannins and other oak compounds detected by the drinker.

Fruity though is another story. This is where many people get most confused. While sweet wines are fruity generally, not all fruity wines are sweet. Sure a rich, fruity Shiraz or Merlot may come across as sweet to some people when what they are tasting are the fruit aspects of the wine. No residual sugar may be detectable, but sweet is the first description to come to mind.

The problem arises when customers approach a store clerk and ask for a sweet red wine. The clerk may innocently sell them some wine loaded down with extra residual sugar, when the customer really didn’t want that.

To add to the confusion, winemakers knowing the sweet tooth many American wine drinkers have have been flooding the market with sugary wines for decades. White Zinfandel is one of the main culprits. This sweet, pink wine has given angina to many a dry rose producer. And even big red wines like Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon aren’t safe from the RS wielding winemaker trying to find a new market for their wines.

I like to think about it this way. A fresh orange is fruity. It does have sweetness, but it is more juicy and refreshing that sweet. On the other hand an orange flavored lollipop is downright sweet with sugar being the first taste sensation.

When tasting wine see if the wine has that refreshing fruitiness to it as opposed to sugary sweetness. Then experiment with different wines, dry and sweet, to see the differences. Here’s a trick. Pour a glass of lemon/lime soda like Sprite or 7-UP. Find a wine that is dry, although quite fruity. Take a taste of the soda and then a taste of the wine. How dry the wine actual is will come out more with the sweetness of the soda on your palate. If the wine still seems sweet after the soda, it may has a little sugar in it.


So when you shop for wine make sure you specify whether you are looking for a sweet or fruity wine so as to help the wine merchant get you the right wine.
Add a comment...

Just a Quick Reminder! Our FREE Grand Wine Tasting is this Saturday! We look forward to seeing you there!
Add a comment...

Just a reminder to join us at our store for our Grand Tasting! Taste dozens of wines and enjoy some light appetizers! 
Add a comment...
Wait while more posts are being loaded