the life of a wine

 

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Everything has a beginning, middle and an end. It is the middle part of wine making, that adds color, brilliance, and interest to wine. From grape to bottle, the process is dramatic with the completion of that transition ours to enjoy. But it doesn’t end there. Once bottled, the wine continues on a journey to maturity.

The wine changes as it ages in the bottle. Fruit flavors integrate with other components and the taste structure softens. White wines become round and increase in complexity, progressing from a light straw color to golden to amber. Red wines quietly drop their brash tannins to become softer, and more velvety, evolving from a bright red color to a deeper brick.

Each wine goes through many changes and each level has its virtues. There isn’t a perfect archetype of how a wine should taste to be at its optimum. Just trust in yourself, let your palate be your guide. A young Chardonnay with tremendous fruit and a lively, crisp finish may be the ideal match with shellfish. As the same wine matures, the fruit settles down and the finish takes on an opulent texture making this version better suited to rich cream sauces, veal and poultry. The key is to enjoy a wine in all of its stages before it is over-oxidized, but even then it makes for a wonderful tenderising marinade, emparting a rich flavour to all meat dishes.

You will know when you have found a perfect wine pairing. The wine will make the food taste amazing, and the food will make the wine taste amazing.

'It is of far more importance to select your wine merchant than to select your wine, for a merchant with a reputation to lose will never give you bad advice'