Wine 101

WINE 101

A few weeks ago I was at a restaurant and I asked the waiter to surprise me with a glass of white wine. The waiter asked me if a dry wine would be okay. I contemplated responding with “no, I prefer it wet and in a glass”, but decided to say “yes” and see what happens. Turns out I like dry white wine.

In an attempt to save myself from future embarrassment, I’ve done some research on the common wine types and how to describe them.


As mentioned in my previous post there are five main types of wine. Here are the common varieties of white and red wine:

Type Varieties Pronunciation Flavour
Whites Chardonnay “Shar-dun-nay” fruity & buttery
Riesling “Reese-ling” very sweet & light
Pinot Gris “Pee-no Gree” dry & crisp
Sauvingnon Blanc “Saw-vin-yawn Blonk” dry, tart & acidic
Reds Merlot Mer-lo fruity & spicy
Cabernet Sauvignon “Cab-er-nay
thick & dark fruit
Pinot Noir “Pee-no Nwar” soft & fruity
Zinfandel “Zin-fan-dell” zesty & fruity

If you’re feeling ambitious and my cheat sheet wasn’t enough, take a look at this comprehensive flow chart of what I imagine covers every wine variety in the world:

Source: Wine Folly

Wine Slang

Here are some fancy-shmancy words that are essential when talking about wine. Be careful though, if used incorrectly you may come across as a wine snob!

Tannins: naturally occurring compounds that exist inside grape skins, seeds and stems. Wines that have little or no skin contact end up pink or white and have low a tannin. Wines that ferment with the skins for a longer period end up red and have a higher tannin.

Dry: residual sugar has been fermented

Sweet: residual sugar remaining

Acidity: high acid = refreshing and crisp (white), lower acid = heavier-bodied wine (red)

Body: weight or viscosity of the wine
Full body = thick & coats side of glass
Light body = like water

Aroma: describes the scent of a wine. Check out this ridiculously detailed graphic to learn about the different aromas:

Source: Business Insider

With Thanksgiving around the corner, I’ve figured out the best red and white wines to pair with your inevitable #turkeycoma.

Next time you’re enjoying a glass of wine, impress your friends by identifying the aroma!

That’s all for now.

Marika xo


Feature Image Source: Pixabay


3 thoughts on “Wine 101

  1. Marika I love this! While I’m working, I am always told how to describe wine to guests: “full bodied”, “dry” etc. I never had a clue what I was talking about, and its nice to finally have more of an idea! Thanks for posting this, it was very helpful!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey Marika!

    The infographics in this post are fantastic! I felt like they really broke down the aristocratic world of wine. Your chart was easy to read and really flowed with the article. Linking to your last post as well as to suggested wines got me to stick around and seek your opinion. Your tags are seasonally appropriate and seem easily searchable. I have absolutely nothing to criticize!

    Liked by 1 person

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