What is wine

03.12.2020
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What is wine

What is Wine - A Simple and Clear Explanation

What is wine? A simple answer would be fermented grape juice, but wine is much more than that. The realm of wine is so complex that it takes a lifetime to master it, but what a ride that is!

Wine is produced in over 70 countries, there are over 2000 different wine grapes, and there are dozens of wine styles, each with unique colors, flavors, and aromas. Learning about wine is quite a challenge to undertake, but few things are more enjoyable than learning about this mythical fermented grape juice. 

Wine is a beverage, but it’s also a way of traveling the world without leaving the comfort of your home. Every sip tells a story, and that’s something special.

To say wine is the product of growing and picking grapes, crushing them and fermenting them until that sweet juice becomes wine, only to be aged in barrels, sometimes for years, is a start, but that’s just the beginning of the journey. 

Here are the most common questions about wine; a great way of getting you on the right track to learn all there is about it. A simple and clear explanation to answer the most challenging question of them all: what is wine?

What is wine made of?

What is wine made of?

Wine is just fermented grape juice, but what’s it made of? Wine is 85% water, and anywhere between 7% and 12% is ethanol alcohol.

Wine might mostly be water and alcohol, but the remaining small percentage is where the magic happens. If you were to evaporate all the water and alcohol from a bottle of wine, you’d end up with a fine powder, often called dry extract. 

This extract comprises acids, sugars, flavonoids, pigments, and sometimes gritty particles called tannins (in reds.) There are between 800 and 1000 different compounds in wine; all these molecules make wine taste, smell, and feel differently. That’s the most exciting part; no two wines are exactly alike.

What is wine yeast?

Where does yeast come into the equation? Well, yeast is essential for wine, but it doesn’t end up in the bottled wine. Here’s the full story.

Yeast is a unicellular fungus called Saccharomyces cerevisiae. It eats sugar and turns it into alcohol with CO2 gas as a byproduct. Yeast is also used to make bread and beer, but today is all about wine, so here’s the deal.

Yeast is everywhere, even on our skin, and it’s also present in the air. Once a winemaker crushes grapes to release that sweet juice, yeasts do their thing. 

Of course, winemakers might choose to use their own store-bought yeast, but ambient yeast would turn the grape juice into wine even if they didn't. Just leave a juice bottle out of the fridge for a few days and watch yeast work its magic.

What is wine good for?

Wine is good for many things; for starters, it’s booze, so you can just pour yourself a glass and relax. 

Alcohol in moderation is quite healthy, especially red wine, for all its antioxidants. Antioxidants are unique particles that bind with scavenging free radicals floating in your bloodstream, causing cellular damage and even cancer. Many other foods have antioxidants like berries and olive oil.

Wine is also a great social enhancer; it can help you loosen up and can even treat depression. In moderation, wine can take treat anxiety too. 

Finally, wine is excellent to enjoy with food. The right combination can make both wine and food taste better, that’s the art of pairing, and we’ll talk about it some other time.

What is wine country?

We, wine lovers, call the wine country any place where wine grapes grow. We call these wine regions as well, and they’re everywhere along the wine belt, between the latitudes 30 and 50 degrees both in the northern and southern hemispheres. 

When you read about the wine country, you’re probably not reading about any specific wine-producing country, but a wine-growing region, which, by the way, is always awesome. Think wine tastings, excellent food, passionate people, and verdant vineyards extending across the most amazing sceneries. Interestingly, if one thing all wine regions share is incredible views. 

What is wine fairy?

If you’ve heard about the wine fairy, then you can consider yourself in-the-know. These are mysterious community groups that come together to share some wine and other treats to cheer up the surrounding people, changing today’s society for good.

Being a wine fairy is all about random acts of kindness, so if you want to become one, find their Facebook page and read all about it. We guess wine fairies DO exist.

Wine common questions

Wine Common Questions and Answers.

What is wine and types of wine?

The most important types of wine are red and white wine. They make most of the market and are the most prevalent by far, but there are many other styles. Rosé, made with red grapes but fermented almost as if it were a white, is super trendy, and let’s not forget about bubbles! Sparkling wine is perfect for celebrations. 

What kind of alcohol is in wine?

Alcohol in wine is ethanol, and it’s the same alcohol present in spirits, cider, and beer. Don’t confuse ethanol with methanol, which is the alcohol you have in your medicine cabinet. You can’t drink methanol; it’s poisonous, so stay clear from it. Even if they sound similar, they’re entirely distinct substances. 

Is wine stronger than vodka?

Wine has between 7% and 16% alcohol. Some wines, called fortified wines, have some brandy in them an can have around 20% alcohol. Even these types have less alcohol than vodka. A typical vodka has, on average, 40%, twice the amount you’ll find in wine. It comes without saying, the amount of alcohol that ends up in your body depends on how much you drink. 

What wine gets you drunk fastest?

The more alcohol in wine, the fastest it will get you drunk, but no specific wine style will get you intoxicated faster, not sweet wine, not sparkling wine. It all has to do with the ABV (Alcohol by Volume) stated on the label.

Is wine good for health?

Drinking too much is bad for your health. It can cause serious maladies than can even lead to death. Alcoholism is no joke, and your body can only take so much. Having said that, a glass or two every day might have positive effects on your health because of wine’s up-lifting qualities and antioxidants.

What is the most popular wine in the world?

The most popular wines in the world are made with Cabernet Sauvignon, which is also the most planted grape on the planet. The most popular white wine is Chardonnay. These two are followed by many other grapes, including Merlot, Syrah, Sauvignon Blanc, Malbec, Pinot Noir, Tempranillo, and Sangiovese.

This is Just the Peak of the Iceberg

Wine is much more complex than you think, but in its complexly there’s an enormous pleasure. There’s enjoyment in every bottle, every glass, and every drop of wine, but also in every bit of information you learn about it. 

Once the wine bug bites you, you never want to stop learning, and this is a great start! So, congratulations, and welcome to the fantastic world of wine.

 

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