Understanding white wine for beginners
Understanding white wine – It’s easier to appreciate and understand the tastes of white wines if you are familiar with the sorts of flavours normally associated with white wines. The flavours and aromas people identify in a wine are not precise, because no one adds honey, pear, or vanilla to wine while making it. Instead people identify flavours and aromas based on what they are reminded of while tasting the wine. This is why it helps to know what you might be looking for by being familiar with white wine flavours and aromas.
What is the taste of white wine?
This is not a list of the sorts of flavours and aromas you’ll find in white wines; instead, it’s a list of some of the most common flavours and aromas which you are likely to encounter. The more familiar you are with these aromas and flavours independently, the easier it will be for you to identify them in whites wines you drink.
Citrus (Lemon, Orange, Grapefruit, Lime, Nectarine)
Floral (Honeysuckle, Violets, Jasmine)
Fruit (Apple, Pear)
Tropical (Melon, Pineapple)
Herbaceous (Grass, Herbs)
What are the Flavours & Aromas Associated with Oaked White Wines?
Not all of the flavours of white wine come directly from the grapes themselves. Some of the most prominent and popular flavours in white wines arise from the methods which the vintners use to create their wine. Chief among these are the flavours derived from oak treatment — whether it is fermenting in oak barrels or just fermenting with oak chips in the wine.
These are some of the most common flavours you are likely to encounter in white wines that have been treated with oak in some fashion:
Woody, Smoky, Toast, Cinnamon, Cream, Caramel, Spice,Vanilla, Cloves, Nutty
Three essential white wines to help you embark on your discovery journey:
Santa Julia Chardonnay Mountain Blend 2017 SAQ # 13657802 $14.95
Julia exists, she is real. Julia is the only daughter of José Zuccardi, current director of Familia Zuccardi winery. Created in her honour, Santa Julia represents the Zuccardi Family’s commitment to achieve the highest quality levels through sustainable practices, contributing to protect the environment and to develop the community.
Founded in early 1990s, Santa Julia is one of the emblematic Argentine wine brands, both in Argentina and around the world. Santa Julia is a combination of the quality and diversity of the Mendoza land, which produces modern wines. Santa Julia produces a diverse range of grape varieties : the classics include Malbec, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon, but also other rather unique varieties such as such as Viognier, Pinot Grigio and Tempranillo.
Crisp and refreshing Argentinian Chardonnay with alluring citric tropical fruits and a lingering finale. Long resonant aftertaste that brings to mind pear, honey with a hint of nougat. Pair wells with fish dishes such as pan seared salmon with vegetables
Selbach-Oster Riesling Qba Mosel-Saar-Ruwer
2016 SAQ # 11034741 $18.20
This textbook introductory Riesling wine originates from the Mosel valley with its steep vineyards and offers an amazing wine quality. Fruit forward with aromas of apples and peaches with just a hint of citrus. The natural acidity gives the wine a perfect contrast with the residual sugar inherent in the palate.
Jean-François Mérieau L’Arpent des Vaudons 2017 SAQ # 12564233 $21.05
The vineyards of Bois Vaudons have been part of the Mérieau family for more than 3 generations. Their holdings covers more than 35 hectares on the hillsides,on the left bank of the Cher in the Loire Valley. These rich and complex terrors allow the production of a range of wines from young and older vines. For instance, the Pineau vines are more than 100 years old.
Jean-François Mérieau took over the Family estate in 2000. Since his arrival, Jean-François has been committed to re-discover the terrors of Loir-et-Cher, working the soil, cutting severely and harvested by hand …
Made from 60-year-old vines grown organically on chalky soils, this Sauvignon Blanc from Jean-François Mérieau is a fine example of the improving quality of Touraine whites. Vinified and aged in stainless steel vats, the wine has lovely scents of lemon and honeysuckle. On the palate, the wine is quite delicate, with a ripe fruit, round texture and bright acidity. Lovely long aromatic finale that evoques salt and confit lemons. It is such as beautiful wine.