Understanding wine descriptions

Things you hear at a wine club’s wine tasting

Wine tastings in St. Helena, CA

A lot of the wine tastings language you hear in a wine club is straightforward. If you know the smell and taste of fruits, vegetables and spices, a lot of the description of the aroma and flavor of wine will be easy to understand. But there are many other terms that seem to defy such understanding. What does it mean, for example, to say that a wine is “angular” or “round?” This refers to the mouthfeel. The sensation of drinking a round wine is very smooth and pleasant, like a smooth surface. If it has low tannins, it might be “velvety.” An angular wine affects the mouth only at certain places, and isn’t as pleasurable.

Wine tasting at a vineyard just outside St. Helena

At Anderson’s Conn Valley Vineyards in Napa Valley, a 10-minute drive from downtown St. Helena, cave tastings are $65, but one tasting fee can be waived by joining their wine club or making a $100 purchase. One wine you might get a chance to try is the 2011 Right Bank. 2011 was a cooler than average year, but Conn Valley saw plenty of sunlight. Thw ine has a nose and palate of blue violets, fresh red raspberry compote, menthol and anise. Its grape and oak tannins blend smoothly together to accompany the bright acidity and fruit. This wine is expected to age well for up to 30 years. Anderson’s wines are sold online and in five locations in Napa Valley, and many other locations nationwide. Join their wine club today and schedule a tasting.

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