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The World of WineAn Overview and Tasting Tour
American Wine Societyawsguy@comcast.net
Promoting appreciation of wine through
The American Wine Society was organized in 1967 as a non-profit, educational, consumer-oriented organization for those interested in learning more about all aspects of wine. Now in its 48th year, the American Wine Society is the largest consumer based wine education organization in North America.
The World of Wine: How It’s MadeSlide3
The World of Wine: Wine Evaluation
The World of Wine Wine Aroma WheelSlide5
of Wine: New World & Old World
Paarl, S Africa
Barossa, McLaren Vale
The World of Wine: Old vs New World Styles
Old World Wine Definition
Old World wine generally refers to wine made in Europe. However, its cultural roots go back to the Roman Empire where the first techniques to produce, store and distribute wine were developed. Since this time, Old World wine has evolved through generations of family winemaking. The
Old World style is based on traditional and sometimes antiquated winemaking practices that have been passed down through the generations. Many of these practices are now regulated by strict laws to preserve an area’s authenticity. Old World Wine Regions include:Italy, France, Spain, Portugal, Austria, Germany, Greece Hungary, Israel, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Croatia, Cyprus, Switzerland, England, MacedoniaCommon Old World Vernacular: Terroir, Earthy, Minerality, Elegant, Herbaceous, Tannic, low-alcoholNew World Wine DefinitionThe term New World refers to countries colonized by Western Europe and regions that are new to wine production. New World wine regions adopted the successful ideas from the Old World and expanded on them. Most of the New World wine regions were started within the last 100 years and benefit from modern agriculture, such as vineyards designed to fit tractors and industrial irrigation.
New World Wine Regions include:United States, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Chile, South Africa,
China, India, Uruguay, Brazil, Mexico, Canada
Common New World Vernacular
: Modern, Fruit-forward, Oakey, Big, Lush, Opulent, Ripe, “
Earth / Terroir
Earth / Terroir
The World of Wine New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc
*Typical Sauvignon Blanc Smell and/or Flavor Elements
Typicity depends upon individual tasting ability and experience and is also affected by terroir and seasonal conditions, as well as viticultural and enological techniques. This list therefore is merely suggestive and neither comprehensive nor exclusive.
grass, lemon-grass, gooseberry
: apricot, quince, peach, honey, pineapple, vanilla, candy
: bell pepper, green olive, asparagus, capsicum
: butter, cream
grapefruit, lime, melon
: vanilla, sweet wood
, box hedge, "catbox"
: toast, smoke, oak
Sauvignon Blanc is an international white grape variety that originates in France. It’s long been used to make world-class wines from Bordeaux and the Loire Valley. Yet in recent decades, Sauvignon Blanc has become an everyday favorite thanks to the New World winemakers of New Zealand.
With its distinctive, vivid aromas and zesty acidity, Sauvignon Blanc is easy to peg in a blind tasting of dry white wines. The wine’s green, herbaceous and fruity scents are sometimes accented with musky aromas, yet its flavors are consistently fresh and bright.
varietal identity of Sauvignon Blanc is typically similar to grass, bell-pepper, or grapefruit in nature. New Zealanders liken it to "gooseberry", but that is not a familiar smell or taste to most Americans. The level of
compounds, naturally-occurring in Sauvignon Blanc, influences whether this distinctive character is mild or intense.Slide8
The World of Wine German Riesling
Riesling is a white grape variety which originated in the Rhine region of Germany. Riesling is an aromatic grape variety displaying flowery, almost perfumed, aromas as well as high acidity. It is used to make dry, semi-sweet, sweet and sparkling white wines.
is usually included in the "top three" white wine varieties together with Chardonnay and Sauvignon blanc. Riesling is a variety which is highly "terroir-expressive", meaning that the character of Riesling wines is clearly influenced by the wine's place of origin.In cool climates, (such as many German wine regions) Riesling wines tend to exhibit apple and tree fruit notes with noticeable levels of acidity that is sometimes balanced with residual sugar. A late-ripening variety that can develop more citrus and peach notes in warmer climates. Riesling's naturally high acidity and pronounced fruit flavors yields immense aging potential with well-made examples from favorable vintages often developing smokey, honey notes and aged German Rieslings, in particular, taking on a "petrol" character.Slide9
The World of Wine Burgundy & California Chardonnay
Chardonnay is a green-skinned grape variety used to make white wine. It originated in the Burgundy wine region of eastern France but is now grown wherever wine is
produced. For new and developing wine regions, growing Chardonnay is seen as a "rite of passage" and an easy entry into the international wine market
.The Chardonnay grape itself is very neutral, with many of the flavors commonly associated with the grape being derived from such influences as terroir and oak. It is vinified in many different styles, from the lean, crisply mineral wines of Chablis, France to New World wines with oak, and tropical fruit flavors. In cool climates Chardonnay tends to be medium to light body with noticeable acidity and flavors of green plum, apple and pear. In warmer locations the flavors become more citrus, peach and melon while in very warm locations more fig and tropical fruit notes such as banana and mango come out. Wines that have gone through malolactic fermentation tend to have softer acidity and fruit flavors with buttery mouth-feel and hazelnut notes.
The World of Wine California Pinot Noir
Pinot noir grapes are grown around the world, mostly in the cooler regions, but the grape is chiefly associated with the Burgundy region of France. Other regions that have gained a reputation for Pinot noir include the Willamette Valley of Oregon, the
Carneros, Central Coast and Russian River AVAs
of California, Tasmania and Yarra Valley in Australia and the Central Otago and Marlborough wine regions of New Zealand. Pinot noir is also a primary variety used in sparkling wine production in Champagne and other wine regions.The tremendously broad range of bouquets, flavors, textures and impressions that Pinot noir can produce sometimes confuses tasters. In the broadest terms, the wine tends to be of light to medium body with an aroma reminiscent of black and / or red cherry, raspberry and to a lesser extent currant and many other fine small red and black berry fruits. Traditional red Burgundy is famous for its savory fleshiness and 'farmyard' aromas, but changing fashions, modern winemaking techniques, and new easier-to-grow clones have favored a lighter, more fruit-prominent, cleaner style.
The World of Wine Bordeaux & Washington Cabernet Sauv.
Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the world's most widely recognized red wine grape varieties. It is grown in nearly every major wine producing country among a diverse spectrum of
Cabernet became internationally recognized through its prominence in Bordeaux wines where it is often blended with Merlot and Cabernet Franc. From France, the grape spread across Europe and to the New World where it found new homes in places like California, Australia, Argentina and Chile. The classic profile of Cabernet Sauvignon tends to be full-bodied wines with high tannins and noticeable acidity that contributes to the wine's aging potential. In cooler climates, Cabernet Sauvignon tends to produce wines with blackcurrant notes that can accompanied by green bell pepper notes, mint and cedar which will all become more pronounced as the wine ages. In more moderate climates the blackcurrant notes are often seen with black cherry and black olives notes while in very hot climates the current flavors can veer towards the "jammy" side.Slide12
The World of Wine Spanish Tempranillo
Tempranillo is the most widely-planted red wine grape in Spain. Considered an indigenous variety, it may have been brought southwest to the Iberian peninsula by French monks. It is especially prominent in wines from the Ribera del Duero and throughout the Rioja and is also a key blending varietal in Port, known by the name of
roriz in Portugal's Douro Valley. Tempranillo is relatively uncommon, however, in most other wine-producing countries.Tempranillo grapes tend to be low both in overall acidity and in sugar, but often high in pH, and nearly always high in tannin from their thick skins, although low in color intensity. Mindful of high tannins, many cool-climate producers advocate partial whole berry fermentation. Cool fermentation temperatures can also serve to decrease tannins and increase fruit flavors. In favorable climates such as the cool higher elevation of Ribera del Duero, tempranillo (aka tinto fino, tinta del pais) can make wine that is moderate in alcohol, but long-lived.
Typical Tempranillo Smell and/or Flavor Descriptors
plum, currant, blackberry
: (not sweet)
(often mistaken for
oak, smoke, toast, tar
very, can be weedy
, thick, powerful tannins can be astringent and dryingSlide13
The World of Wine: Wine & Food Pairing GuideSlide14
The World of Wine Wine andCheese
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