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What latitudes limit where grape vines grow best?
- Too warm if < 30° N or S
- Too cold if > 50° N or S
What variety has smaller berries -- Cabernet Sauvignon or Cabernet Franc?
- Petit indicates smaller berries and is usually better.
- Cabernet Sauvignon is also known as Petit Vidure.
- Cabernet Franc is also known as Gros Vidure.
- Note: Vidure is also known as the Carmenere grape.
What is an organic wine?
Wines made using minimal SO2 using grapes grown without chemicsls (fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides).
Why is grape skin important?
- Grape skin contains most of the aroma associated with a grape variety.
- Sauvignon Blac has thick skin Ripe aromas include peach in warm climates and gooseberry in cool climates.
- Underripe aromas are grassy, elderflower, cat pee.
- Semillion has thin skin. It is a neutral wine and susceptible to noble rot.
What is the difference between oxidative and reductive wine making?
- Oxidative is fermentation in the presence of oxygen.
- This allows removal of oxidized elements so wine can age better.
- Reductive is fermentation in the absense of oxygen.
- This allows the fruity characteristics to be kept intact but results in shorter shelf life.
Name 5 wine faults, what they are, and how to identify them.
- 2-4-6 Trichloroanisole (TCA) - "corked"
- Results from tainted cork
- Smells like wet moldy cardboard
- Volatile Acidity (VA)
- Results from fatty acids, e.g., acetic and carbonic acid
- Smells like vinegar or fingernail polish
- Brettanomyces (Brett)
- Results from a genus of yeast, usually affecting red wine
- Smells "horsey", leather, band-aid, urine/fecal notes
- Excess SO2
- Added during winemaking
- Smells like a matchstick or wet wool
- Results from age or poor storage
- Smells of cooked fruit with vegetal notes, and has a flat finish
What characteristics does a fine wine have?
- Natural balance and finesse
- Distinctive individual character within its own type or style
Why swirl the glass?
- To volatize the esters, thus release the flavor elements attached to the alcohol
- Esters are chemicals formed by the reaction between alcohol and acid
What are the 4 steps of the deductive tasting method and which is the most important step in blind tasting?
- Sight (aka Eye)
- Smell (aka Nose)
- Taste (aka Palate)
- Conclusion (Initial and Final)
Nose is the most important step in a blind tasting.
What does Sight (Eye) of a wine indicate?
- Grape Variety
- Growing Climate
Name levels of color for white, blush, and red wines (from lightest/youngest to darkest/oldest)
- White: Watery, Straw, Yellow, Gold, Brown
- Blush: Pink, Salmon, Brown
- Red: Purple, Ruby(Red), Garnet(Reddish brown), Orange, Brown
Name 6 levels of brightness in increasing order
dull, hazy, bright, day bright, star bright, brilliant
What is brightness in a wine?
The capacity of a wine to reflect light
Name 5 levels of alcolhol (in terms of ABV%)
- Med-: 10-11%
- Medium: 11.5-12.5%
- Med+: 13-14%
High: > 14.5%
What are the steps to assess the eye of a wine?
- Limpidity (Clarity)
- Acid makes wines shiny on top
- Viscosity (Tears/Legs)
- Thin/Fast indicate Low Alcohol, Low Residual Sugar
- Close indicates warmer growing region
- Color (under natural light)
- Green tint indicates cooler growing region
- Watery rim indicates high alcohol
- Rim variation increases as a wine ages
What graphe species is important for winemaking?
Species: Vitis vinifera (several thousand varieties)
Subgenus: Euvities (60 species) and Muscadiniae
Genus: Vitis (9 others but not important for wine making)
Family: Vitaceae (also known as Ampelidaceae)
Name 3 rootstocks used for grafting
- Vitis Berlandieri
- Vitis Riparia
- Vitis Rupestris
Name 5 general types of aromas
- Vegetative, Herbaceous (= non-woody plant)
- Spicy, Herbal, Resinous
Name fruit aromas associated with wine
- Citrus: grapefruit, Lemon, Lime, orange
- Berry: blackberry, respberry, strawberry, black current/cassis, gooseberry, grape
- Tree/Stone fruit: apple, apricot, black/red cherry, elderberry, plum, peach, pear, olive
- Tropical fruit: lychee, pineapple, melon, banana
- Dried/Cooked fruit: (strawberry jam, raisin, prune, fig
- Other fruit: tomato, artificial, methyl anthranilate (foxy)
Name woody, earthy, caramel, and other aromas associated with wine
- Woody-Burned: smokey, burnt toast, coffee
- Woody-Phenolic: medicinal, bacon
- Woody-Resinous: tobacco, oak, cedar, vanilla
- Earthy: moldy cork, mushroom [pinot meunier], musty, stone
- Microbiological: mousy, horsey, potato peel [red wine, maybe corked], manure [PN], yogurt, sweaty, sauerkraut, leesy, baker's yeast
- Nutty: walnut, hazelnut, almond
- Caramel: honey, butterscotch, butter, soy sauce, chocolate, molasses, creamy
Name vegetative, herbaceous aromas associated with wine (most indicate wine faults)
- Fresh: Cut grass (SB or Semillon), Bell Pepper/Capsicum, Eucalyptus, Mint
- Canned/Cooked: Green bean, Asparagus (overripe SB), Black/Green olive, Artichoke, Canned peas (overripe SB), Beets (over the hill PN, CF)
- Dried: Hay (slight oxidation of sparkling wines), Tea
- Chemical: Pungent (SO2, acetic acid [vinegar], ethyl acetate [nail polish remover]
- Sulfer: Onion/Garlic [serious fault], Cabbage/Cauliflower [Chardonnay, PN], wet dog/wet wool, burnt match, skunk, natural gas [mercaptan], rubber, rotten eggs [hydrogen sulfide]
- Petroleum: tar [barolo, northern rhone], diesel, kerosene, plastic
- Oxidized: sherry
Name floral aromas associated with wine
- Linalool (Earl Grey Tea)
- Orange blossom
Name Spicy/Resinous aromas associated with wine
- Spicey: licorice/anise, clove, gingerbread, pepper [Syrah: crushed black, Gruner Veltliner: ground white], cinnamon
- Woody-Resinous: tobacco, oak, cedar, vanilla
- Note: these aromas are enhanced by dryness and masked by sweetness
What are the mineral requirements of the vine?
- The most important soil nutrients are
- Nitrogen: for green matter
- Phosphate: for root development
- Potassim: improves metabolism and next years crop
- Iron: for photosynthesis
- Magnesium: for chlorophyll
- Calcium: for roots and neutralizes acidity)
What is Terroir?
Anything that contributes a sense of place.
Such factors include soil, location, aspect, climate, and weather (vintage, temperature, sunshine, rainfall, frost).
Aspect refers to the vineyard's topography--which direction the vines face, the angle and height of any slope, etc.--and how this interrelates with the climate.
Describe the annual lifecycle of the vine (9 steps)
Add 6 months for Southern Hemisphere:
- Feb: Weeping (sap oozing out of the pruned cane ends)
- Mar-Apr: Bud-break (vines secured to training frames)
- Apr-May: Emergence of shoots, foliage, and embryo bunches (spraying begins)
- May-Jun: Flowering of the vine (68°-77°F is ideal)
- Jun-Jul: Fruit Set (29-53% of the embryo bunch evolve into grapes depending on variety)
- Aug: Ripening of the grapes (after skin turns color--veraison)
- Aug-Oct: Harvest (earlier nearer to the equator; white grapes ripen before black grapes)
- Nov-Dec: Botrytis cinerea (Edelfaule in Germany) -- grapes dehydrate and are subject to cold which induces chemical changes called passerillage; this can lead to "noble rot".
- Dec-Jan: Eiswein (in Germany and Canada, frozen grapes are harvested, the frozen water is skimmed off pressed grapes, leaving a super-concentrated pulp)
Why is oak the only wood used for barrel-making?
Other woods are either too porous or contain overpowering aromatic substances that unpleasantly taint wine.
White oak is easily bent, has a low porosity, acceptable tannin content, and mild, creamy aromatic substances.
How many gallons does a wine cask ("barrique") hold?
- Traditional sizes range from
- 54 gallons (Champagne)
- 59 gallons (Bordeaux, Spain)
- 60 gallons (Burgundy)
- 79-83 gallons (Australia, New Zealand)
What is a tonnelier?
A cooper (barrel maker)
Where should a wine bung be positioned during fermentation?
When fermenting white wines, the bung is always uppermost. After racking the barrels are filled to the very top and positioned so the bung is to one side, visually reminding cellar-workers that the casks are full.
How do you know if oak chips were used?
The wine label mentions oak, but not barriques, barrels, or casks.
Describe the steps of vinification
- Hopper/Crusher/Destemmer: red wines are pumped into a vat because they must be fermented along with a manta, or cap, of grapeskins; remontage or pigeage is used to keep the juice in contact with the grapeskins during fermentation; some aromatic white wines undergo prefermentation maceration in a vinimatic
- Fermentation: yeast cells excrete enzymes that convert natural fruit sugars into almost equal quantities of alcohol and carbonic gas; optimum temperature is 85°F for red wine and 64°F for white wine
- Pressing: free-run wine, or vin de goutte, and press wine, or vin de presse, are pumped into separate vats to undergo MLC separately
- Malolactic fermentation: converts the hard malic acid of unripe grapes into two parts soft lactic acid and one part carbonic gas
- Racking: draining the clear wine off its lees into another cask
- Fining: adding egg white, tannin, gelatin, bentonite, isinglass, or casein to wine which adheres to cloudy matter and thereby clarifies the wine
- Cold stabilization: dropping the temperature very low for a few days so harmless crystalline tartrates can be precipitated)
- Filtration: 4 types: earth, pad, membrane, and crossflow
- Bottling: automates cork, capsule, label, and box operations; some systems print a lot number on the bottle or label.
What are pigeage, remontage, and vinimatic?
- Systems to keep the fermenting juice in contact with the grapeskins.
- Pigeage means the manta is manually pushed under fermenting juice using poles.
- Remontage means pumping fermenting juice over the manta of grapeskins.
- Vinimatic keeps the manta submerged in a sealed rotating stainless-steel tank (like a cement mixer).
- Other methods include vats with grids that prevent the manta from rising, relying on carbonic gas to build up pressure and periodically push the manta under the surface.
What is wine?
Wholly or partially fermented fruit juice (usually grapes).
What are the 5 types of wine labels?
- Varietal: New World and Alsace, Germany, Austria
- Place name: Old World
- Proprietary: legally protected brand, like Opus One or Le Cigare Volant
- Generic: white, blush, red
- Semi-Generic: (stolen place name such as Champagne, Burgundy, Chablis, etc. when they are not from there).
What is MLC? (aka MLF)
- Malolactic conversion (or fermentation).
- Turns malic acid into lactic acid to make the wine softer.
- 99% of red wines got through MLC as do many Chardonnays
Name 5 reasons to decant wine
- To gently remove sediment (old tannins) from old red wines
- To vigorously aerate young, tannic red wines
- To slightly warm a wine
- To blow off excessive sufites (e.g., German wines)
- For "show and dough"
- Use largest available decanter (to make sure you can decant the entire bottle)
- Use tall and thin versus short and fat decanter
- Coasters should be used for the decanter, the bottle, and the cork (and can be used to raise one end of a decanting cradle)
How do you clean a decanter?
Add salt and then ice cubes
What is the name of a table trolley?
What is a wine cradle used for?
To move a bottle from the cellar (stored on it's side) to a gueridon.
What is a vinolok?
A glass wine bottle stopper popular in Germany
Name 5 keys to high wine sales
- Product knowledge
- Daily preparation (mise en place)
- Read your customers (see what page in the wine list they are looking at, start fast, time your approach, do not quit at entree)
Name 5 sales strategies
- Suggestive selling
- Downselling (to gain trust)
- Wine pairing vs bottle sales
How does one pair wine with food?
- Match intensity.
- Wine traits: color, body, sugar, acid, tannin, alcohol, aromas, flavors, length, complexity
- Food traits: same as wine traits plus salt, spicy heat, temperature)
Name 3 steps to pairing wine with food
- Match the overall intensity of the food and wine
- Identify the key ingredients of the food
- Decide whether to compare or contrast
How should wine flavors progress during a meal?
Flavor progression should build in intensity
Name 6 "rules" of ordering wine tastings
- Light before full-bodied
- Dry before sweet
- Low alcohol before high alcohol
- Low tannin before high tannin
- Young before old
- Simple before complex
Name food/wine pairing considerations
- If food is smoked, bring on the oak
- Beat the (spicy) heat with sweet
- Wine as sweet as the food
- Match ethnicity (e.g., France, Italy)
- Match regionality (e.g., Chavignol goat cheese with Sancerre)
- Match the occasion or weather (if hot, low alcohol and high acid -- acid quenches our thirst)
- Drink what you like (pair wine with people rather than food; good food goes with good wine--even if they don't go well together)
How does food impact wine?
- If food is this (then it impacts perception of wine this way):
- Salty, acidic, fatty, high in protein (lowers acid and tannin)
- Spicy (increases alcohol and tannin)
- Bitter (increases sweetness)
- Sweet (increases tannins)
How does wine impact food?
- If wine is this (then it impacts perception of food this way):
- Sugar (tame spicy, contrast salty, showcase sweet)
- Acid (cut fatty, cleanse salty/briny, showcase crisp)
- Tannin (cut fatty, match bitter greens)
Name 4 foods that are wine "killers"
- Artichokes: cynarin makes wine taste sweet) so serve with wine that is tart, thin, dry, acidic
- Asparagus: cynarin makes wine taste sweet) so serve with wine that is dry, grassy (SB), or herbal (Gruner Veltliner) or mitigate by grilling, roasting or only serving tips
- Vinaigrettes: makes wine taste flabby so use less vinegar or replace with citrus or verjus (tart, underripe grape juice)
- Eggs: makes wine taste metalic or sufurous so add wine-friendly incredients to the food such as mushrooms, bacon, or cheese
- cleanse palate with high acid white wines (Mimosa good in the morning)
Name 4 classic food-wine pairings
- Caviar and Champagne (young, bone dry), iced vodka
- salty food with acidic wine
- Raw Oysters and Champagne/Muscadet, Sancerre (SB), Chablis, Guinness Stout (bitter)
- salty food with acidic wine
- Foi Gras and Sauterne or Tokaji Aszu (maybe very old Madeira)
- fatty food with acidic wine
Chocolate and Port, demi-sec Champagne, Banyuls (fortified Grenache apéritif from France)
- sweet food with sweet wine
- sweet food with low tannin wine
- high intensity food with high intensity wine
- Note: Mo's Bacon Bar goes with any red wine
What are Cameron's rules of wine and food pairing?
- (Pair strongest flavor)
- Acid (if food high then wine high; if food low then any wine)
- Weight / Intensity (match)
- Flavor (counter-balance, never match)
- Complexity (if complex food then simple wine; if simple food then complex wine)
- Theme (match; light/simple/airy, earthy/rich, warm/hearty, country of origin)
What is astringency?
Action on your palate that srips acidity from your mouth
What does phenolic imbalance mean?
Too much of one component
What color is garnet?
Orangey (brick) as in old red wine
How much rain does a vine require each year?
- 27 inches
- Ideally, most of the rain should fall in the spring and winter, but some is needed in the summer too.
- Vines can survive with less water if the temperature is higher.
Name the 2 basic systems of vine training
- Guyot (Cane-training): Pendelbogen, Scott Henry-Cane, Vertical Shoot Positioned (VSP)
- Gobelet (Spur-training): Bush vine, Chablis, Cordon de Royat, Geneva Double Curtain, Lyre, Minimal Pruning, Scott Henry-Spur, Sylvos, Sylvos-Hawke's Bay
What is Sur lie?
Describes a wine that has been allowed to lie on its lees for some time before being racked off. The intention is to add extra richness and flavour to the wine.
What is cold stabilization?
Chilling wine prior to bottling. This causes tartaric acid to crystallise out, thereby avoiding the formation of tartrate crystals, specifically potassium hydrogen tartrate, when the wine is in the bottle.
What is Chaptalisation?
The process of adding sugar to the fermenting vat, which is converted to ethyl alcohol by the yeast. The intent is to increase the final alcohol content.
What does Cepage mean?
Varietal Markers for Chardonnay
Hazelnut, Apple, Cheese Rind, Pineapple, Butter
Varietal Markers for Sauvignon Blanc
Grapefruit, Grass, Gooseberry, Tarragon in Sancerre, Jalapeno, Passionfruit in New Zealand
Varietal Markers for Gewurztraminer
lychee, rose, potpourri, grapefruit pith, candied ginger
Varietal Markers for Viognier
Honeysuckle, Vanilla, Citrus Blossom, Fruit Loops, Mango
Varietal Markers for Muscat
orange candy, rose
Varietal Markers for Pinot Grigio
lemon rind, melon, peanut shell, flat beer
Varietal Markers for Riesling
apricot, peach, petrol, lime zest (young Aussie Riesling)
Varietal Markers for Albarino
peach, orange oil, juicy fruit gum
Varietal Markers for Gruner Veltliner
white pepper, lentils, watercress, radish
Varietal Markers for Chenin Blanc
bruised apple, honey, chamomile, wasabi, tangerine, wet wool
Varietal Markers for Pinot Noir
Black Cherry, strawberry, cranberry, violets, tomato leaf, cola bean
Varietal Markers for Gamay
strawberry, bubblegum, violets, banana
Varietal Markers for Cabernet Sauvignon
black currant, green pepper, tobacco
Varietal Markers for Merlot
Plum, Blackberry, chocolate, fern leaf
Varietal Markers for Cabernet Franc
black currant, red currant, green bell pepper, jalapeno, marijuana
Varietal Markers for Nebbiolo
dried red fruits, tar, rose, licorice, truffle, mushrooms
Varietal Markers for Tempranillo
tart red raspberry, tobacco, sweet and sour, dillweed, bay leaf, ripe strawberries
Varietal Markers for Grenache
dehydrated strawberries, raspberry, black pepper, raisins, powdered sugar, grenadine
Varietal Markers for Sangiovese
sour red cherry, licorice root, fennel, black tea, leafy underbrush
Varietal Markers for Malbec
blueberry, coffee bean, ripe plum
Varietal Markers for Zinfandel
cranberry, blueberry jam, Blackberry pie, Peppercorn, Peach Yogurt
Varietal Markers for Syrah
raspberry, blueberry, black pepper, smoked meat, leather
Name 7 wine bottle closures
- Natural Cork: cork oak (Quercus suber); Portugal, Algeria, Spain, Morocco, France, Italy, Tunisia
- Composite Cork: granulated cork with glue
- Synthetic Cork: plastic
- Screwcap: Stelvin closure
- Zork: plastic stopper
- VinoLok: glass stopper
- Crown Cap: like beer bottles
- Note: Cork contains a natural waxy substance, called suberin, which makes it impermeable to liquids and gas, and prevents the cork from rotting.
What is cork?
- Bark of the Cork Oak (Quercus Suber) tree, typically from Portugal and Spain
- It takes 9 years to develop.
Name 3 wine preservation (after opening) methods
- Private Reserve (gas): good for up to 3 weeks but must stay motionless
- VacuVin (pump): not very effective since oxygen remains in bottle; good for perhaps 2 to 5 days
- Champagne stoppers:
- You can also just put red and white wines in the refridgerator for a day.
Name 3 restaurant solutions for wine preservation
- Cruvinet (not for sparkling wines; must be cleaned every 3 to 4 days)
What creates wine body?
Tannin and Alcohol
What is the last part of a grape to ripen?
What temperature should wine be served at?
- Sparkling - 45°F
- Still Whtes - 55°F
- Rose - 58°F
- Reds - 65°F
What temperature should wine be stored at if there is only one temperature zone?
- All wines can be stored between 55°F and 60°F.
- Beer coolers (40°F) are too cold.
- Dry storage (70°F) are too warm.
- Try to find a dark cabinet near the floor.
What conditions are beneficial for wine storage?
- Keep bottles on their sides
- Moderate humidity
- Free of vibration
- Consistent environment
What is sediment?
Tannin which has solidified over time.
Why are Vitis Vinifera vines grafted on American rootstocks?
American rootstocks are not subject to Phylloxera.
Name 3 scales to measure sugar content.
- Degrees Brix (°Bx): named after Adolf Brix, represents percentage by weight.
- The Baumé scale (B°, Be°, Bé°): named after Antoine Baumé, measures the density of various liquids. The Baumé of plain water is 0.
- The Oechsle Scale (°Oe): named for Ferdinand Oechsle, measures the density of grape must, which is an indication of grape ripeness and sugar content. It is widely used in Germany, Switzerland, and Luxembourg.
What is a degree day?
- Days > 50°F (10°C)
- Vines grow best if >100 days of such temperatures.
Describe soil components important for grape growing.
- Top soil (drainage)
- Sub soil (water table)
- Mineral composition
What are tannins?
A large molecule acid. The texture may be a powdery or puckery feel.
What characteristics should wine glassware have?
- Thin with a smooth lip
- Seamless Stem (so you don't play with the glass)
- Glassware should enhance the flavor and olfactory impression and fit the image of the restaurant.
- Is it machine washable?
How do you pair wine with food?
- 1. Match the overall intensity of the food and wine(color, sugar, acid, tannin, alcohol, body, lenth, complexity, length, FEW (aromas and flavors; food also has salty, spicy, temperature)
- 2. Identify the key ingredients of the food
- 3. Decide whether to compare or contrast
In what order should wines be served?
- Flavor progression should build in intensity during a meal.
- Light before full-bodied
- Dry before sweet
- Low alcohol before high alcohol
- Low tannin before high tannin
- Young before old
- Simple before complex
How do you prevent Fois Gras served in the middle of a meal from becoming a train wreck?
Serve an intermezzo. Cold, sour, and bitter will reset your palate.
What causes Pierce�s disease?
- A vine bacterial disease (Xylella fastidiosa) carried by the glassy-winged sharpshooter (a leafhopper insect).
- Pierce's disease was discovered in 1892 by Newton Barris Pierce.
- There are no resistant vinifera varieties, and Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are especially sensitive.
What is Kokumi?
A chalk and minerality sensation
Combination of organic farming and nature's rhythm
State the purpose of dry farming
Stresses the vines, forcing the roots to go deeper, promoting photosynthesis and fruit production. Results in better quality and concentration of fruit.
Define green harvesting and state its purpose
Thinning of the vines by removing some clusters prior to ripeness, usually in Spring, enabling the remaining cluster to fully develop. Can be used under less than ideal weather conditions or to increase the quality of the grapes on particularly vigorous vines.
- Unit of measure for sugar content in grape
- Tools include hydrometer, refractometer
Name a method of dealing with mildew in the vineyards
- Cut leaves, enable air flow around grapes
- Use of mined or elemental sulfur
Define cover crops and state their purpose
Plants placed around vines to prevent soil erosion and in some cases replaces nutrients in the soil ex: legumes add nitrogen
Name an additive that can eliminate spoilage & oxidation of the must & wine
Define cold soak & state its purpose
Bringing temperature of fresh grapes down to prevent fermentation and allow skin color and flavor extraction
Define punching down & state its purpose
Breaks up the cap and mixes juice for better color and tannin extraction
Define sur lie & state its purpose
Wine aged on its yeasts and solids to impart aromatics and develop complexity
Process of removing sediment during barrel aging by transferring clean juice from one barrel to another. Introduces slight oxidation/aging of the wine.
Name a fining agent
Egg whites, gelatin, silica, pig snouts!
State what causes tartrate crystals in a finished wine
- Acid instability in wine with high potassium or acid
- Usually seen as crystals on bottoms of corks or in sediment