Colours and Aromas But where is this vanilla, the rose, the apple? Where do the experts spot them? Why do the sommeliers swirl the glass and smell the wine before they taste it?
Colours and Aromas
But where is this vanilla, the rose, the apple? Where do the experts spot them? Why do the sommeliers swirl the glass and smell the wine before they taste it?
Let’s however take first things first and enter the world of experts for a while!
All fruits are scented. The grape, in particular, is a fruit with aromas that diversify from one variety to another. This variety of aromas – which directly depend on the good condition of the plants – is exactly what the art of winemaking attempts to capture within the bottle.
Grape scents, the experts’ terpenes, originate in substances that exist in the skin, and that pass on to the wine via the must. Every single fruit, every single plant disposes of similar substances that result to its characteristic aroma.
For example, roses smell like roses thanks to phenyl diethanol as do bananas thanks to acetic isoamylester (Isoamyl Gallate).
Therefore the Isoamyl Gallate produces the characteristic aroma of the banana, ethanol and methanol the scent of fresh apples. The scent of the decomposing apple, is due to acetaldehyde (or ethanal), with the effect of oxygen over the wine. The cinnamon scent (characteristic in aged wines) is given by the cinamic aldehyde, the rose’s scent (mainly found in wines from Mantineia) is due to phenyl diethanol. The special fragrance of the vanilla is produced by the wood tannins of the barrel within which the wine will remain, a fact that renders the choice of the barrel a very significant parameter for the final scent of the wine.
But there is more than just that. The species of the vine, the soil of the vineyard, the flowers in the adjacent area, will also play their role in the final wine aroma.
The first identifiable scents are those of the grape, most characteristic being that of the
Fresh flowers, fruits, definitely refers to a new wine, vanilla scents to a wine which has remained in the barrel for quite some time, whereas dry fruit aromas or scents of chocolate, coffee and lots more take us to an aged wine.
Plentiful colours! Ruby colours, colours of flowers, purple, red, crimson. Not more than a few characterizations of a good wine, which – one should always remember – requires the suitable illumination and an appropriate glass, in order to rise to the prominence it really deserves.