logo
g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Career
Computers
Education
Family
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
Money
News & Politics
Relationships
Religion & Spirituality
Sports
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

dailyclick
Bored? Games!
Nutrition
Postcards
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

new
Painting
Heart Disease
Horror Literature
Dating
Hiking & Backpacking
SF/Fantasy Books
Healthy Foods


dailyclick
All times in EST

Full Schedule
g
g Wine Site

BellaOnline's Wine Editor

g

Wood and Wine

Guest Author - Paula S.W. Laurita

That wine is too woody....This wine has just a hint of oak....What does this mean to the wine drinker?

The art of wine making has two distinct parts, fermentation and maturation. The first is when grape juice turns into wine. Maturation (sometimes called finishing) follows fermentation. This is when young wine begins to calm down and smooth out its rough edges. Think of it as those wild teenage years that smooth out into adulthood. When done right this time is when wine comes into its own, forming a distinct character. Just as with people, this maturation process varies from wine to wine. It can take a few months to years (see Barolo).

Oak barrels are a traditional storage container for the fermentation or maturation process. The barrels impart their own unique flavor to the wine. That is why some wines are described as being "oaky." Some people like it (me) others dislike it (my husband).

One argument for finishing wine in oak barrels is that the oak creates a more intense nose and length on the palate. This is where flavors described as "vanilla" or "coconut" come from. There are French oak and American oak barrels. French oak is more expensive, but often preferred because it imparts a subtler flavor. This is one reason aged barrels are preferrable to new. The oak flavor is softer. New oak barrels are the choice by some in Bordeaux. American oak is often used for wines such as Cabernet Sauvignon.

"Toasty" flavors come from the amount of "toast" each barrel has. This "toast" is the charring that is done to the inside of the barrel. The amount of charring, the age of the barrel, and the size of the barrel will effect the flavor of the wine.

Be aware that in some cases, essences are added to wines to impart an oaky flavor. This is understandable for the home vintner. It can be less than honest for industrial wineries to present "oaky" wines that have never touched a wood barrel. When purchasing a wine you may want to dertermine the type of barrel used, the age, etc., before purchasing an expensive bottle of wine. Knowledge about your wine can be empowering.

Add Wood+and+Wine to Twitter Add Wood+and+Wine to Facebook Add Wood+and+Wine to MySpace Add Wood+and+Wine to Del.icio.us Digg Wood+and+Wine Add Wood+and+Wine to Yahoo My Web Add Wood+and+Wine to Google Bookmarks Add Wood+and+Wine to Stumbleupon Add Wood+and+Wine to Reddit




Barrel Fermentation and Barrel Aging Wine
RSS
Editor's Picks Articles
Top Ten Articles
Previous Features
Site Map


For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Wine Newsletter


Past Issues


print
Printer Friendly
bookmark
Bookmark
tell friend
Tell a Friend
forum
Forum
email
Email Editor


Content copyright © 2013 by Paula S.W. Laurita. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Paula S.W. Laurita. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Peter F May for details.

g


g features
Wine with Easter Lamb

Spice Route Winery, South Africa

DeToren Winery, South Africa

Archives | Site Map

forum
Forum
email
Contact

Past Issues
memberscenter


vote
Poetry
Daily
Weekly
Monthly
Less than Monthly



BellaOnline on Facebook
g


| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2013 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.


BellaOnline Editor