Wine 101 – Terminology


Acetic, Angular, Astringent, Austere – Wine terms are a strange language that can sometimes be imposing. Come explore a few of these words and meanings with your GrapeRadio crew.

Also take the time to check our new comprehensive directory of wine terms at: Wine Terms Glossary

Enter our new competition to see who can come up with the best wine terms we are missing. To enter, just comment on this show. The contest expires April 30th, 2006. The winner will be awarded a copy of Karen MacNeils book: “The Wine Bible”

The Winner of our Wine Term Contest is: Elaine Miller, with the best missing term – “GRAPE” (How could we have forgotten that one?).

Sponsor: Quality Price Ratio Wine Buying Guide:

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Show #83
(31:42 min 14 MB)

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64 Responses to “Wine 101 – Terminology”

  1. 1 GrapeRadio Bunch Apr 17th, 2006 at 1:47 pm


    Try either of these two sites. They both have great tasting notes and you do not need to be signed up to view. I think you will need to sign up (free) if you want to submit a request.


  2. 2 Julie Flavin Apr 19th, 2006 at 7:31 am

    Here are some additions to your terminology. I would love to wine the book and learn more. GREAT PODCAST!!!!!

    troncais oak: This type of oak comes from the forest of Troncais in central France.

    viscous: Viscous wines tend to be relatively concentrated, fat, almost thick wines with a great density of fruit extract, plenty of glycerin, and high alcohol content. If they have balancing acidity, they can be tremendously flavorful and exciting wines. If they lack acidity, they are often flabby and heavy.

    Kisselguhr filtration system: This is a filtration system using diatomaceous earth as the filtering material, rather than cellulose, or in the past, before it was banned, asbestos.

    inox vats: This is the French term for stainless steel vats that are used for both fermentation and storage of wine.

    Double decanting: This is done by first decanting the wine into a decanter and then rinsing the original bottle out with non-chlorinated water and then immediately repouring the wine from the decanter back into the bottle. It varies with the wine as to how long you cork it.

  3. 3 Robert Apr 21st, 2006 at 2:18 pm

    Main Entry: 1va·ri·e·tal
    Pronunciation: v&-‘rI-&-t&l
    Function: adjective
    1 : of, relating to, or characterizing a variety ; also : being a variety in distinction from an individual or species
    2 : of, relating to, or producing a varietal

  4. 4 Randy K. Walker Apr 25th, 2006 at 9:14 am

    Lillet – a French wine that makes a great apertif. It is also the wine used in James Bond’s martini. Recipe: One part gin, one part vodka, one part Lillet. Shaken, not stirred. Add olive.

  5. 5 Randy K. Walker Apr 25th, 2006 at 9:20 am

    Gnarly – used to describe the knotted, twisted areas of the vine; and also the ground in which it grows.

  6. 6 Dan Apr 25th, 2006 at 6:30 pm

    Great show! I’d love to see this topic in more depth. For example, you mention tannins, but what about all the variations like soft tannins, well integrated tannins, silky tannins, etc. – what do they all mean?

    Also, you could mention that a great way for beginners to get familiar with what tannins feel like is to get some red grapes from the grocery store, peel a few, and chew on the skins for a few minutes. Its also interesting to then eat the skinless grapes – it points out the fact that the only real difference between white & red grapes is in the skin. The meat tastes pretty much the same.

  7. 7 Elaine Miller Apr 27th, 2006 at 3:19 pm

    GOBELET – A grape vine training system.

  8. 8 Elaine Miller Apr 27th, 2006 at 3:21 pm

    Um – duh – GRAPE? The fruit from which wine is made. Grows on a vine. 🙂

  9. 9 Elaine Miller Apr 27th, 2006 at 3:31 pm

    SCION – The piece of vine that is grafted onto the rootstock.

  10. 10 Elaine Miller Apr 27th, 2006 at 3:38 pm

    BULL’S BLOOD, aka EGRI BIKAVER – A red wine made in Hungary.

  11. 11 Randy K. Walker Apr 29th, 2006 at 11:21 am

    [kohr-TEH-zeh, kohr-TAY-zee]
    A white-wine grape grown in northwest Italy, mainly in PIEDMONT and parts of LOMBARDY. Cortese generally produces good-quality, high-ACID wines that have a DELICATE, fruity aroma and flavor. Much of this wine is sold as Cortese del Piemonte. Higher-quality wines come from the DOC of GAVI, with those known as Gavi di Gavi being among the most expensive Italian white wines.

  12. 12 Randy K. Walker Apr 29th, 2006 at 12:07 pm

    Brouilly AC
    This is the largest and southernmost of the ten CRUS in France’s BEAUJOLAIS region.

  13. 13 Randy K. Walker Apr 29th, 2006 at 12:08 pm

    The full name of this French red wine grape is Gamay Noir a’Jus Blanc. Gamay wines have gained prominence in France’s BEAUJOLAIS region where this grape, which represents 98 percent of all vines planted, reigns supreme. They’re so associated with Beaujolais that winemakers outside of the region often try to imitate the style of immediately drinkable, light- to medium-weight wines with high ACID and low TANNINS. These light purple, fruity wines suggest flavors of bananas, berries, and peaches

  14. 14 GrapeRadio Bunch May 9th, 2006 at 6:30 pm

    Congrats, to the winner of our Wine Term Contest: Elaine Miller, with the best missing term – “GRAPE” (How could we have forgotten that one?).

    The GrapeRadio Crew

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