Flashcards in Fortified Wine Production Deck (36)
What does fortified mean with regard to "fortified wines"?
A wine which has had its alcohol level raised through the addition of a neutral grape spirit to a point at which the yeast and bacteria can't survive.
What made fortified wines popular during the days of sailing ships and colonization?
It kept the wines stable for long voyages to the New World; they lasted longer/didn't spoil.
The main differences among the numerous fortified wines come from three things. What are they?
1) The grape varieties used
2) How far the fermentation is allowed to progress before the high-alcohol spirits are added
3) The aging regime after fortification
What is the minimum alcohol level of a fortified wine required to prevent additional refermentation?
15%. Typically fortified wines are 15-18% alcohol
What is the essential difference between sweet and dry style fortified wines?
Sweet styles are fortified during fermentation while dry styles are fortified after fermentation is complete and all the sugar has been converted to alcohol.
One of the primary ways to make a sweet wine is to add alcohol to the wine before or while it is still fermenting and has a significant amount of sugar in it. This process is known as mutage.
What is the most renowned sweet fortified wine? Where is it produced and with what grapes?
Port, produced in the Douro Valley of Portugal, using primarily Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Barroca, and Tinto Cao.
What is a sweet style fortified wine other than Port that comes from Portugal? What grapes are used?
Setubal and some Madeiras. Setubal uses muscat. Sweet Madeiras come primarily from Malvasia, Boal, and Tinta Negra Mole
What is a sweet style fortified wine from Spain? What grapes are used?
Malaga which comes from Pedro Ximenez and Muscat
What is a dry and sweet fortified wine from Italy? What part of Italy and what grapes are used?
Marsala from the island of Sicily. Catarrato, Inzolia, and Grillo are used.
What are the three types of Marsala?
Oro (golden), Ambra (amber), and Rubino (ruby red)
What are the 3 levels of sweetness in Marsala?
Secco (dry; maximum 4% residual sugar), Semiecco (semidry; 4-10% residual sugar), or dolce (sweet; more than 10% residual sugar)
What are the 5 variations of Marsala that are based on aging?
Marsala Fine (aged for a minimum of one year), Marsala Superiore (two years), Marsala Superiore Riserva (four years or more), Marsala Vergine or Marsala Soleras (aged in a cask for a minimum of five years in a solera system like that of Sherry)
What is the most highly esteemed version of Marsala?
Vergine Stravecchio Riserva; a dry marsala that requires a minimum of ten years aging in a cask.
What is a sweet fortified wine from Greece? What grapes are used?
Mavrodaphne of Patras using Mavrodaphne grape (red from the Peloponnese region)
What is a sweet fortified wine that comes from Cyprus? Is it always fortified? What grapes are used?
Commandaria; a sweet amber colored dessert wine with ancestry dating back four millennia. It is made using sun-dried grapes (a blend of red Mavro and white Xynisteri varieties left out in the sun after harvest to evaporate some of their water content). It is not always fortified but aged in a solera type system
What are two vins doux naturals from France that are sweet? What areas of France are they from?
Banyuls and Muscat de Beaumes-de-Venise. Muscat de Beaumes-de-Venise is a sweet white (or gold or pink) made from Muscat and from the southern Rhone appellation. Banyuls comes from Roussillon.
What is a Rutherglen Muscat?
It is a sweet fortified wine from the Rutherglen region in the state of Victoria in Australia. This region is known for its fortified Muscat wines.
What are the 4 classic styles of Madeira named by the noble grapes traditionally used for that style? List them from driest to sweetest.
Sercial: dry and highly acidic, Verdelho: off-dry, Boal: raisiny and sweet, Malmsey: (a British corruption of "Malvasia") very sweet, yet balanced by acidity
What do Setubal and Rutherglen have in common, how do they differ?
They are both sweet fortified wines that come from Muscat; however, Setubal is from Portugal while Rutherglen is from Australia
Which French vins doux naturels come mainly from Grenache?
Banyuls (Roussillon), Maury (Roussillon), Rasteau (Southern Rhone)
What are New World Ports traditionally made with?
There are no limitations, but often they are made from the traditional Port grapes (Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Barroca, Tinta Cao) as well as Shiraz or Zinfandel
Which two fortified wines in particular are intentionally left to bake in a hot above-ground warehouse?
Madeiras and Rutherglen Muscats
What is Pineau des Charantes the best known example of?
Vins de Liqueur: wines in France where the grapes are fortified even before they begin to ferment, or shortly thereafter. Is also goes by the term "mistelle" in French "mistela" in Spanish and "sifone" in Italian
What is biological aging in reference to Sherry production?
This means that the changes in the wine are largely due to the action of the living yeast. Biological aging results in lower alcohol and acid levels and a much higher amount of acetaldehyde. Typical of fino Sherry.
What is oxidative aging in reference to Sherry production?
Alcohol and acid levels increase, without the creation of acetaldehyde, the color of the wine deepens. This is the process Sherry wines without flor undergo to become an oloroso.
What are two examples of a flor wine (aside from fino Sherry)?
Vin Jaune from the Jura Mountains of southeast France and Tokaji from Hungary.
Define the "fractional blending system"
This is also referred to as "running the scales". At least once a year, after each vintage, wine is bottled from the solera row (this contains the oldest wine in the solera system). Then, wine from the first criadera (the second oldest wine) tops off the solera, 2nd tops the first, so on. Finally the new wine of the vintage goes into the last criadera. No barrel is ever completely empties so this process ensures that the average age of the solera continues to grow.
There are several kinds of Port, sometimes placed into two basic categories. What are these two categories?
1) vintage and single quinta (estate) Ports which are primarily bottle aged 2) all other Ports aged principally in wood