Know Your Grapes
Just as we've learnt to distinguish between chicken and turkey, it's time to learn one grape from another. If you're used to drinking the cheapest wine you'd be forgiven for thinking that there isn't really much difference, especially as many cheap wines are blended with many watery grape varieties. However, buy a couple of different mid-range wines (1.200 - 1.600 kr) and set up a tasting - you will soon see the difference!
I've kept the words to a minimum here; try to remember and detect the key flavours and with a little practice you will soon be able to tell one wine from the other. Practice makes perfect!
Blackcurrants and cigar box - you should feel some tannin (mouth drying sensation)
Plums. Nearly always soft, medium-bodied and inoffensive - arguably boring.
Think black pepper and spice!
Inky black darkness, blackberries, full-bodied and smooth.
Raspberries and cherries, this is a light, elegant wine. In older wines, esp Burgundy, there will be notes of vegetabley compost and manure (quite delicious really!).
Chablis: steely dry and acidic
Oaked (esp American or White Burgundy): rich, butter, toffee, nutty and toasty
All other unoaked: peaches, honey, tropical fruit perhaps, not too acidic
Fresh citrus, grassy, gooseberry zing! (some say it smells like cat's pee......judge for yourself!)
Makes both dry and sweet wines. Floral, citrus, apples, sometimes petrolly.....
Smells sweet, like lychees. Oily and rich.
Makes dry and sweet wines. Grass, citrus, honey and toast - gets waxier as it gets older (one of the few white wines that can be aged)
Flowers - zesty - dry.
Light and crisp; fresh melon, nuts, a little spice.
Smells of wet sheep (an Icelandic speciality) and beeswax, tastes of tropical fruit and honey.
Peaches, apricots, spices, flowers, honey and buttery/oily to taste. Smells sweet, tastes dry.