Do you prefer a white wine over other varieties? About half of all wine drinkers will choose white wines as their favourites. In actuality, the wine isn’t white in colour at all, but falls more in the yellow family.
White wine has existed for over 2500 years. It is made by fermenting the non-coloured pulp of grapes to produce a delightful beverage. Surprisingly, a grape that has a coloured skin, such as Pinot Noir, can be used to produce a delectable white wine.
A white wine’s flavour can be described as dry or sweet, depending on the amount of sugars it contains. Other descriptions include acidic, tannic and metallic, to name just a few.
The alcohol content of wine is typically between 12.5% and 14.5%. It is the alcohol in a wine that helps to balance its sweetness and acidity. Through evaporation, the aroma of the wine is carried to our senses, further adding to the experience.
The characteristics of a wine are owed in part to the location of the vineyards. For instance, Ontario white wines are known to express the flavours of the individual grape variety while balancing acidity and mineral notes central to the region. Grapes grown in a cooler climate result in wines that have more complex flavours than those produced from grapes grown in warmer climates.
Popular varieties of white wine include Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Riesling, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc and Champagne. With this in mind, some glassware manufacturers will provide a differently-shaped glass for each variety. The glasses are carefully designed to allow the wine to reach the part of the tongue that brings out the true essence of each variety.
Dry white wine is the most commonly purchased due to its taste and aroma. These characteristics are derived from the complete fermentation process. If the fermentation is interrupted, a sweeter wine will be the result. Another desirable result can be produced by keeping the carbon dioxide created during fermentation dissolved in the wine. This gives a sparkling, festive effect to some white wines.
Due to their great variety in style, taste, and lightness, white wines will pair beautifully with any part of the meal. Considered a refreshing choice, white wines pair well with poultry, seafood, eggs, cheese, and pork and can be enjoyed with or between courses.
You will enjoy using white wine in your cooking as well. Whether marinating or deglazing, white wine has the supreme characteristics of acidity and aroma, making it an excellent choice.