Wednesday, 27 August 2014

The language of wine

For a long time I have been working in the wine section of a shop. When I began the first problem was to find everything. Then I had a new problem – customer questions. When I discovered that my knowledge about wine was close to zero, I decided to change that and started reading about the topic. I knew that wines are made from grapes, but that is just the beginning of a long path to discover about this topic.

Unfortunately, the more I read, the less I know. The world of wine is unusually complicated. There are hundreds of vineyards all over the world, many kinds of grapes and also a lot of different times for harvesting grapes, different processes of fermentation and different lengths. For sure, we can be bewildered by all this information.

The fact is that this topic is really curious and interesting. I started my trip the simple way. By the wine label. Now I know that the label contains the name and the country, but also a lot of different information. For example, if a wine is from Austria, we have the name ‘Ausbruch’. It means that this wine is sweet and it’s made from grapes which have been attacked by a grey mould. Another example, when we speak about Italian wines, very often on the label we have the word ‘classico’. That means that the vineyard has a top classification. When we speak about our favourite French wines, we should know that cuvée means that it is a blend of two or more different wines.

If you want to know more, you should start reading up on the topic. I know that there are a lot of books on wine available. Personally, I am stuck on ‘A’ in the huge dictionary of wines. I hope that when I get to ‘Z’, the recession will be over and I will try the dearest French wine. But for now, I can only dream about this wine. But if the recession is still around, here’s a piece of advice. Make your own wine at home. For example, Roscommon cuvée 2009, a little Guinness, two glasses of Druid’s beer plus juice from freshly imported grapes from Spain!