Class #2 and just as fact filled and enjoyable as Class #1. Last night we learned about vineyard conditions and the impact of weather. We also learned about how wine is fermented as well as what some label designations mean. It was all somewhat technical but I was fascinated.
I suspect that not all of you are as wine geeky as me so, like last time, I'll stick to the highlights:
1) Way too many things can go wrong when making wine which is why I stick to studying it and drinking it. Kinda like how I was an Art History major in college - I can't draw for anything, but that didn't keep me from judging someone else's work!
2) More than anything else, the way a wine is harvested drives the cost of the wine. This is why there's no way an inexpensive red Cabernet Sauvignon was aged in actual oak. Most likely an oak flavor or oak chips were introduced to the wine. Makes you want to save up for the $50 bottle, right?!?
3) The word "cuvee" on a wine label means that the winemaker thinks that the wine is particularly special. This designation is made at the discretion of the winemaker. So hopefully the winemaker isn't an egotistical blowhard who thinks every wine he/she makes is a cuvee.
4) There's a difference between a wine that is oxidized and a wine that is "corked." I still can't explain the difference, but I do know a wine that has been oxidized smells like rotting prunes and raisins while a wine that has been corked smells tinny and metallic. I personally have a much easier time discerning an oxidized wine.
5) My palette is still way under-developed and I'm pretty sure I'm jealous of my classmates, David and Lynette, who seem to be able to pick out all the crazy smells like crab apple and green pepper and asparagus. I may struggle with getting asparagus out of a noseful of wine but at least I'm still quick with the snappy comment (and I'm glad that David and Lynette have such good senses of humor). I look forward to the day someone calls me out for picking up the scent of tar or lemon chiffon or fine Italian leather in my glass of wine.
Saturday night is my dad's 75th birthday and I'm "coordinating" the wine so you know I'll be talking about some yummy pinot noirs this weekend.