How to Choose a Good Wine

Whether just wanting to try something new or trying to make one’s own wine – choosing a good wine is key. This article will lay out some suggestions as to how to choose the perfect wine.

It is not as simple as black and white when trying to select the best wine. “Best” is subjective due to each individual’s flavor preference. “Good wine” does not mean it is expensive or that it comes highly recommended by reviewers – good wine is enjoyable to drink. There are sweet wines like White zinfandel and Icewine and for those who may not want a sweet wine, try one in the dry category – the term for a lack of sweetness in regards to wine. Other characteristics to consider when choosing the perfect wine, whether to drink or to make, are tannins. High tannins are usually common in red wines and are similar in flavor to that of biting a grape seed. Acidity is also a characteristic to ponder – high acid can produce a tart or sour taste and a low acid can make a wine taste flat, like it has been uncorked for too long.

When someone is starting out with familiarizing themselves with wine there are some things to pay attention to while drinking the beverage. How does the wine smell? What color is it? Where is it from? Does the wine’s flavor drown out the taste of food? These details will help future wine decisions.

Reading the label for the information about the grapes used to make the wine is also helpful. Wines take on the taste of the grapes used during the making process and not all grapes have the same flavor. A blend of different grapes is one way to customize flavor pallets and create something new or the perfect combination of flavors for the pickiest of drinkers.

The location of the winery can also influence a wine’s flavor (and price). The grapes can take on the flavors and aromas of the soil they are grown in and this can affect how a wine tastes. For example, grapes grown in France can sometimes have a hint of lavender due to the lavender fields found in the country.

Choosing the best wine for a meal can be as easy as picking a wine able to stand on its own. If a meal would do well with hints of apple, pear or other citrus flavors then a white wine would be the best route. If serving foods that could have hints of red grapes, cherry, or currant flavors then red wines are a good choice. Sometimes with hearty meals if a light wine is served it can seem dull in flavor, which why it is common to serve heartier wines with these types of meals. Some wines are best with foods and may be too strong as just a cocktail. Lighter wines, such as whites or blushes can be great on their own or with light appetizers. Heavier styles of wine go well with full meals. Ignore the outdated rule of pairing white wines with white food and red wine with red food because there are a variety of lighter reds like Pinot Noir, Syrah, and Sangiovese that compliment meals of chicken, pork or seafood. Champagne/sparkling wine goes well with most anything especially desserts due to the tendency to be sweet. White wines ranging from light flavors such as Riesling and Pinot Grigio to fuller flavors such as Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay can please a variety of taste buds with the varying sweet and dry flavors. Reds also range from light such as Beaujolais (Gamay Noir), Pinot Noir, and Syrah to fuller flavors like Red Zinfandels, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon can be the perfect accessory to meals including foods such as pasta, chocolate, pork, beef and Asian foods.