The wine glossary: Going beyond the sommelier gobbledygook


There is always a lot of discussions in the professional circles which can put you off and scare you away. Do not be scared! 

Wine is made to be enjoyed tand he most important judge is you. Whatever you smell or taste is what counts. Do not worry about other opinions and buy the wines that you like. Once you have found the wine that suit you, then the experimentation can start.

Here are a few words you will often hear. YOU don’t need to use these words, use your own words describe the wine your way and hey, as we're all always learning, let us know your vocabulary.




Sharp, crisp and zesty flavors that contributes to wine freshness. A wine with a fresh profile is good to start your day with and it will wake up your taste buds.


The taste or flavor that lingers in your mouth after wine is tasted, spit or swallowed. This is often a topic of conversation among wine connoisseurs.


Wine is alive! Wine is aged firstly in barrels and then in the bottle. All wine is aged from a few weeks to a few decades. What is interesting is how the wine changes with age. We all know the expression, but be careful, the conditions to store your wine bottle must be good for it to age well. Tip, buy a few bottles of the same wine and open a bottle every year and you will see the difference.


Easy, drinkable wine. Think of a wine that you can have with friends without eating anything and it flows like water on a hot sunny day (or any day).


A wine’s scent. What you can smell when you open a bottle. Nothing scientific, just approach this the way you would approach describing the enticing smells of spicy food or floral scents on a nice spring day.


A lighter style, fresh and easy to drink. You don’t want to stop!



The ability to produce wine that is blended without one grape or component upstaging another. Balance is so important in wine as it is in life. If one thing is overpowering, it can ruin the whole experience. Harmony is the key!


A term used to describe red wines, such as Cabernet Sauvignon. Means a one with a lot of force and structure. Think of a body builder. These are the wines you want to match with a big steak.


An intense wine, loaded with tannins and concentrated fruits. Name says it all.


Fancy word for what you smell when you bring your wine glass to your nose.


A rich wine with a sort of creamy texture like butter. You taste the wine and it sort of lingers.



A wine with plenty of tannins and fruits, when you taste your wine you feel like you are biting the fruit. Tannins comes from the skins, pips and seeds of the grapes, as well as from the wood barrels where the wine is aged. This can also explained why sometimes your mouth feels dry after drinking.


An intense wine, there is a lot going on with undertones of a variety of flavors. Like anything in life, when you have of a lot of moving parts, you have complexity. But if done right, you don't even notice it.


Generous acidity found in clean and fresh wines. Think of a crisp morning, these wines will wake you up. Usually found in white wine chatter.



Full of flavor. When you taste a deep and strong wine you know that you are faced with power. Think of red wines coming from warm regions and you normally find more deep reds.


Refers to the maturity of a wine. When wine is young it can be agitated like a teenager. But when it grows and matures, the flavors are in balance with an element of harmonious ease.


No trace or taste of sweetness so you won’t find any sugary taste. More commonly used with white wines, but can appear elsewhere. In sparkling wines you can find different levels of sweetness and dryness. Let the label guide you:  Extra brut = super dry, brut = dry, demi-sec = already quite some sweetness, doux = this is a dessert by itself



Beauty, grace and subtlety … All flavors are perfectly balanced.



Surprise, surprise … Fruity wines have a strong taste and smell of … fresh fruit !


A wine that lacks balance in its structure, particularly in its acidity on the finish. Not something you’ll find in our shop ;)


An intense wine, also described as "big".



The amount of time the flavors stay in the mouth after swallowing, the longer the better.


This term describes the dead bits of yeast particles, pulp, seed and other grape matter that sink to the bottom of wine during production. Lees are stirred up once a day to give wine a thicker texture.


If the persistence of flavor in a wine stays on your palate for several seconds, it is said to be lingering.



This term describes the aroma and bouquet of a wine.


A light, youthful and fruity red wine which is bottled and sold as soon as possible.




A young tannic wine with a coarse texture.


Describes a wine with a smooth texture, the opposite of coarse or tannic.


A full-bodied and intense wine.



You’re looking for an easy-drinking wine ? We call that a smooth wine. A wine with soft tannins and pleasing texture.



All wines have a personality. A tight wine holds a strong personality and has hard-to-identify fruity characteristics.


It simply refers to how a wine feels on your palate.



Those damn kids … Those are immature wines that are usually bottled and sold within a year of its production. They’re know for their crisp flavors.

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