Wine Frequently Asked Questions


Most frequent questions and answers

Typically, red wines are made in a dry style; however, you can find sweet red wines. Some people prefer a sweeter red because they have higher residual sugar content and lower tannins. Sweet red wine is a great option to pair with dark chocolate.

You should always store wine in a dark and dry place to preserve its delicious flavor.

When you swirl wine, the wine’s aromas attach themselves to oxygen and become easier to smell. Swirling also eliminates foul-smelling compounds. To see how powerful the nose really is, plug your nostrils and take a sip of your wine at the same time.

Depending on the type of wine, an unopened bottle of wine can last anywhere from 1-20 years.

The first known evidence of a wine-type fermented drink, which was made of rice and grape, was discovered in ancient China around 7000 BC. The earliest evidence of wine in George was in 6000 BC. Iran created its own wine in 5000 BC, and Sicily did the same in 4000 BC. The first winery discovered in 4100 BC was the Areni-1 winery in Armenia.

It is against the law for an unlicensed person to ship a bottle of wine to a friend, or anyone else for that matter. If you are licensed to ship wine, you must have a special contract with UPS specifically for shipping wine.

The majority of people prefer red wine. White wine comes in second, followed by rosé.

Ultimately, this comes down to the flavors of your wine. When you fill the glass to the top, you risk closing off the taste of the wine, causing it to taste tight. You also won’t be able to swirl your wine without spilling it. Typically, wine tastes better when it’s given time to breathe for a few minutes before it’s consumed.

When you drink out of a wine glass, the specific shape of the glass helps you to pick up the aroma of the wine. It also directs the wine to the exact part of your mouth that lets you enjoy the wine most.

The best temperature to store wine at is anywhere from 55 to 57 degrees Fahrenheit.

A wine cellar is an entire space that’s dedicated to storing wine long-term, while a wine cooler is an appliance that allows you to store wine at a consistent temperature. A wine cooler is usually best for storing wine for a short period of time at the correct serving temperature.

By law, a table wine is a wine that contains 14% or less alcohol and is not bubbly. Dessert wines, on the other hand, contain more than 14% alcohol. Most dessert wines are either made from grapes that have a very high concentration of sugar or alcohol is added during or after the fermentation process.

Because wine shouldn’t be stored as cold as other beverages, a wine cooler is set to a higher temperature range than a refrigerator or beverage cooler. Most wine coolers won’t offer temperatures below 46 degrees Fahrenheit.

Wine boasts plenty of health benefits; however, when you drink too much of it, you can put your liver at risk. Previously, a study showed that wine was less harmful to the liver than other spirits, but a new study is now casting doubt over that.
Warm wine isn’t harmful and won’t make you sick, but it won’t taste good either. Even if your wine has turned to vinegar, it wouldn’t taste great, but it wouldn’t be dangerous to drink.

Some wines are made from a single type of grape while others are known as a blend. When a wine is considered a blend, the different juices are fermented separately and then combined together.

Wines that are considered organic, biodynamic and natural are created by winemakers who avoid using herbicides and pesticides.

Organic winemakers not only use a reduction of sulfites in the wine bottle, they also ban any GMOs or non-permitted additives. However, the biggest difference is that organic wines do not contain the lack of coloring agents and concentrated wine additives like Mega Purple and flavoring agents such as malic acid and caramel.

Yes, organic wine grapes are generally healthier than the non-organic version. Because of this, they produce heartier skins and higher concentrations of anthocyanins and antioxidants.

A study recently revealed that alcohol bottles contain a harmful amount of toxic chemicals, including lead and cadmium. This study showed that glass bottles of beer, wine and spirits and bottles decorated with enamel contained cadmium, lead and chromium.

There is no fat or cholesterol in wine. You can enjoy it as a guilt-free treat!

Yes, all champagne is considered sparkling wine; however, not all sparkling wine is champagne.

Aeration is the infusion of oxygen into a wine in order to develop and balance its elements.

There are three major types of wine: red, white and rosé. However, there are different, less popular varieties, including orange and even blue.

 The color of a wine is determined by the contact that the grape juice has with grape skins. It also impacts the levels of tannins in the finished product.

Tartrate crystals are harmless, diamond-like sediment commonly found in white wine. These crystals are formed when the wine has been stored in the cold.

Anytime you pop a champagne cork, yeasts ferment sugars and form carbon dioxide gas, which results in fizz.

Sweet champagnes, called brut, make up about 95% of all champagne. There are two levels of brut, extra brut and brut nature, and four sweetness levels that are sweeter than brut. Demi-sec is the most popular level, while doux (the sweetest) is nearly non-existent. The two additional levels, sec and extra sec, can be difficult to find.

You can tell if a wine is biodynamic by where the certification mark is on the label. If it’s on the front, it’s a biodynamic certified wine. If it’s on the back, it’s wine from a biodynamic certified estate or farm. This pertains mostly to agriculture.

Despite the fact that organic wine typically has less sulfites than conventional wine, it can still give you a hangover. Hangovers are caused by the alcohol content, although histamines and tannins in wine can contribute to a headache the next day.

Wine is an alcoholic drink that is made using the fermented juice of grapes. In theory, you can use any fruit to make wine, including apples, plums and cranberries; however, if the label says “wine,” it is made using grapes.

Tannins are mostly responsible for that bitter taste that leaves your mouth feeling dry after you take a sip of a super tannic wine like a Cabernet Sauvignon. They mostly come from the grape skins, seeds, stems, and oak, and get stronger the longer the skins are in contact with the juice as it ferments. The same thing is also found in tea, and it’s what makes your drink bitter if you let it steep for too long.

Not every wine will benefit from aging. In fact, many wines are made to be opened immediately; otherwise, they will lose their fruit character. For wines that are made to be aged, you may find you don’t enjoy the taste when they are consumed prematurely since they likely have high levels of tannins and acid.

White whines should usually be consumed within two to three years of bottling. There are some fine white wines that are better enjoyed at 10 to 15 years of age.

To open a wine bottle, place the corkscrew in the center of the cork and twist clockwise.

Light is one of the biggest culprits responsible for causing wine to age prematurely, damaging the wine. This is why you’ll find many wine bottles are colored; it helps them keep the harmful UV rays that come from direct sunlight away from the wine.

Different wines have different levels of alcohol, ranging from 5% to 23% alcohol by volume. On average, wine contains about 12% ABV.

In most cases, there is no difference in the quality of grapes used in wine that is expensive versus wine that is cheap. In fact, you may not be able to tell the difference between a cheap wine and an expensive bottle.

Typically, white wine is made using white grapes and the skin is removed from the juice before the fermentation process begins. Red wine, on the other hand, is made using darker red or black grapes, and the skins are usually kept on during the fermentation process.

It is recommended that you store wine either on its side or at an angle no larger than 10 degrees. This helps to keep the cork moist and prevents it from drying out.

Your bottle of wine may be off if…

  • It smells off.
  • The cork is slightly pushed out from the bottle.
  • The wine is a brownish color.
  • You detect astringent or chemical flavors.
  • It tastes fizzy, but it’s not a sparkling wine.

It’s important to let your wine come up or down to the proper serving temperature before you serve it. This will allow full expression of the wine aroma and flavor.

Red wine should be served slightly below room temperature, ideally between 58 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit. Older wines should be served slightly warmed between 61 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit, while younger wines should be served on the colder end of the spectrum. If you’re offering a red wine that has stronger tannins, it should be kept on the warmer end of the temperature spectrum than lighter red wines, which can go as cold as 55 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Meanwhile, white wines can be served colder than reds. However, you should be careful that they aren’t stored at such a cold temperature that they lose their aromas. Instead, white wine should be chilled between 45 and 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Sparkling wines should be on the colder end of that spectrum, as should sweet white wines. Champagne should be served the coldest of all at 38 to 45 degrees Fahrenheit.

It’s best to store your wine in a space that is consistently cool, dark, and moist; however, if you don’t have that, a wine refrigerator (also known as a wine cooler) will work. Keeping your wine in a separate wine fridge also helps prevent cross-contamination from food odors.

Synthetic corks don’t expand or contract within the bottle. Natural corks, on the other hand, expand and contract alongside the bottle, which allows them to maintain a tight seal between the cork and bottle.

Research shows that white wine does the most to improve heart health and may even prevent heart disease. However, red wine contains even more powerful antioxidants, which may protect your blood vessels and prevent blood clots. These antioxidants are also known to decrease bad cholesterol (LDL), while increasing the good cholesterol (HDL).

According to research, drinking an occasional glass of red wine is good for you. Red wine provides antioxidants, may promote longevity and can help protect against heart disease and harmful inflammation, among other benefits. Although red wine has higher levels of antioxidants than white wine, the latter is also known to improve heart health.

Alcohol is made from sugar, so if you look for wines that have less alcohol, you will take in less sugar as well. Aim for 10 to 12 percent alcohol by volume. Dry red wines, like a  cabernet sauvignon, will be much lower in sugar than merlot, for instance. For a low sugar wine go for a dry white wine.

Tannins, plant chemicals that contain healthful antioxidants and create the amazing flavor in red wines, also spur the release of the neurotransmitter serotonin. At high levels, this can cause headaches in some people.

Yes, two bottles a day of wine is too much. It can result in liver damage, skin disorders, emotional disorders, memory damage and increased risk of heart disease.

Much like with beer, wine can cause you to gain fast around your midsection. It is best to consume wine in moderation and to maintain a healthy diet and exercise routine.

Normally, it’s best to keep boxed wine in the refrigerator—even if it’s red. Red wines in a box are typically lighter styles that are best enjoyed slightly chilled.

Damascenone is a smell compound found in grapes that contributes floral notes to many wines.

There are around 1,300 varieties of grape that are used to produce wine.

Studies show that one drink a day (especially red wine) may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by as much as 40 percent. In fact, according to research, people who consume a glass of alcohol per day may live longer than non-drinkers.

Oenophobia is an uncontrollable and irrational fear, also known as a phobia toward wine. This disease is associated with methyphobia or fear of alcoholic beverages.

One ton of grapes makes around 60 cases of wine, or 720 bottles. One 750ml bottle of wine contains nearly 2.8 pounds of grapes or 600-800 individual grapes.

To chill wine faster, consider putting ice and salt (instead of just ice) in a bucket.

Not all wines taste better once they’ve aged. In fact, 90 percent of wines should be consumed within a year of production.

To prevent the hand raising the temperature of the beverage, wine glasses should be held by the stem.

When a wine is biodynamic, it means that the grapes are farmed biodynamically and that the winemaker didn’t make the wine with any common manipulations like yeast additions or acidity adjustments.

The certification mark on the label can help you identify whether or not your wine is biodynamic. If it’s on the front, it’s a biodynamic certified wine. If it’s on the back, it’s wine from a biodynamic certified estate or farm. This pertains mostly to agriculture.

There has been no link found between sulfites in wine and headaches. In fact, for people who have a sulfite allergy, the typical response is not a headache but hives and difficulty breathing. Generally, white wines have more added sulfites than reds.