Thirsty Girl Wine Tips and Terms

Here are some exclusive tips and sips from our Head Thirsty Girl, Leslie Sbrocco. Next time you find yourself at the bar by yourself, strike up a conversation with person next to you or the bartender. Wow them with your fabulous knowledge.

Cheers to that!

  • Toasting the oak staves in new barrels imparts notes of vanilla and spice to wine. After a few years of use, the barrel becomes a neutral vessel imparting little oak character.
  • Tannins are chemical compounds found in the skins, stems and seeds of grapes that impart an astringent sensation in young red wines. Tannins help wine age and pair with food.
  • A varietal wine, such as Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon, must contain a minimum of 75% of that grape variety.
  • Wines that simply say Oregon can be a blend of grapes from the state’s various growing regions, which include places like the Willamette, Umpqua, Columbia and Rogue Valleys.
  • Pinot Grigio is the same grape variety as Pinot Gris. Both mean pinot grey in reference to their pink/maroon skin color.
  • White Sauvignon Blanc is a tad untamed since it takes its name from the French word for savage. It, along with elegant red Cabernet Franc, gave birth to the hearty red Cabernet Sauvignon grape.
  • Wine Words: Crisp, bright, smooth = acidity levels in wine from higher to lower
  • Wine Words: Dry, off-dry, medium-dry, sweet = sweetness levels in wine
  • Wine Words: Light, medium and full-bodied = the feel of the wine in your mouth. These relate to alcohol and residual sugar levels. The less alcohol, the lighter the wine feels. The sweeter the wine, the richer and more dense it can feel.

What tips would you add?

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