Have you sometimes felt awkward because you did not know what wine to pick? Is food pairing nightmarish for you even after you have been keenly trying to learn?
We all have these moments, and there is no judgment involved, more so because wine is a very complex subject.
It intermingles with culture and history, also the geography of the places that it originates from. Finally, also even genetics! A person can be genetically hardwired to like a particular wine too! If you are looking to understand the main styles of wine and how they make it, you’ve come to the right place. We will also tell you their salient features and the foods that you can pair with them. What are we waiting for? Let’s dive into it!!
The five basic types of wine
The wine character is primarily based on the variety of the grapes used as much as the region it is grown in. Apart from these two, other factors affect the flavors in a big way. For instance, the wine’s acidity is mostly determined by the amount of tannin it consists of, its aroma bouquet, the sweetness in it, and its alcohol content.
Based on the above features, the five main categories are
White wine gets extracted either from white, red, or black grapes. The method employed to extract the wine is to remove the red pigment from it. White wine has a characteristic savory and sometimes a creamy flavor. To taste the classic white wine, you must reach out for a glass of Chardonnay or a Riesling. Sauvignon Blanc and Moscato can also be fine examples of white wines. White wine is best paired with creamy cheese, white bread, meats such as fish and other seafood, and a host of other salads.
The preparation of red wine is similar to that of white wine, except that the red color from the grape’s skin, inside pip, and the seed are highly desirable. The deep red color is the result of a comprehensive and elaborate fermentation process. The deeper the color, the more desirable the wine becomes. Because the color adds a lot of value to it, red wine gets fermented at higher temperatures and longer than white wine to get the plum color, helping to extract maximum color, tannin, aroma, and deep flavors.
For textbook examples of red wine, ask exclusively for Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Pinot Noir and Zinfandel are great red wines too. Red wine is best paired with oven-grilled veggies and white meat if it is light-bodied. If you choose a medium-bodied or full-bodied red one, you can nicely pair it with steak, smoked beef, and burgers.
The Rose wine has a delightful light pink color. It is mostly extracted from red and black grapes. The fermentation time for rose wine is very short, only half a day to one-and-half days. That is the traditional way of making it. There is yet another style for making rose wine: blending red and white wine! Rose wine is sometimes sweet and sometimes can taste a bit dry. The depth of its color depends on how long it ferments. Pink wine has a low amount of tannin and is, therefore, the least acidic of all wines. Rose wine goes best with dishes with light flavors such as fish, poultry, and fleshy fruits.
A dessert or a sweet wine gets served usually at the end of the meal and with the dessert course. However, some countries in continental Europe consume sweet wine as an appetizer. They may also repeat at the end of the meal to rinse the palate. Port, Tawny, and Sherry are some of the categories of the dessert wine. They pair exceptionally well with all sorts of desserts and smoked meat and cheeses.
There is one thing that sparkling wine will remind you and that is a celebration. The carbon dioxide bubbles in it are either added during the fermentation period or naturally occurring. Sparkling wine is mostly categorized by the place that it originates from. The most famous example is that of Champagne from the champagne region in France. Other sparkling wines are Cava, which is from Spain, and Prosecco that is from Italy. Sparkling wine is heaven-made with salads, bread, seafood, and cheeses.
Knowing about your favorite wine and how it gets made gives you an immense amount of confidence in a social setting, especially when you are out impressing your date or business associate. If you are looking to learn everything about the different wines, skip the bars and the departmental stores. It is best to locate a local wine store and taste all the styles.