Wine 101

What is meant by “nosing” a wine?

“Nosing a wine” refers to smelling the wine. When smelling a wine, the taster dips their nose into the upper portion of the wine glass (not into the wine itself) and breathes in the aromas coming off of the wine. Depending on the complexity of wine and the varietal of the grapes used in its production, a wine’s aromas may cultivate in many, deep layers of smells throughout the glass, so when smelling the wine, the taster may dip their nose deeper and deeper into the glass.

November 20, 2017 / by / in
I’m thinking of starting a wine cellar. How shall I stock it?

As with any aspect of collecting wine, what goes into your wine cellar is entirely up to you!

Do you prefer red wines more than white? White more than red? What about rose or sparkling wines?

How large do you want to build your cellar, and for what reason? Are you going to entertain guests often, or do you wish to collect wines to later give out as gifts? Or, do you happen to live in a remote location and so only visit your favorite wineries once per year?

All of these factors play into the decision making process of stocking your wine cellar.

If you’re set on a particular wine and love it to death, great! Buy a few bottles, or even a case. Set it aside and forget about it. It’s a foundation wine and will help you build a stock in your cellar. Next, try new wines. Try new wineries. Visit new tasting rooms. Expose your palate to new options and you may realize that you don’t want to limit yourself to a cellar full of just a few good wines. Instead, perhaps 2-3 bottles from a given winemaker is sufficient, and you want to then move on to another.

The size of your cellar is going to be based on amount of space, your budget, and your intended use for that cellar. If you do run out of space, you always have the option to trade wines with your friends, or simply create more space by enjoying some of the wines you’ve been collecting.

November 17, 2017 / by / in
What are some of the believed wine health benefits?

This topic is slightly controversial. It seems every few years, new data is released through various media outlets purporting new research, new medical discoveries, and of course new government-related warnings about the benefits and harm of wine consumption.

First of all, we at OregonWines.com want to press the point of in all things, moderation. Overdoing any type of food or beverage, especially those containing alcohol, can be harmful to your health.

“Moderate consumption” is difficult to define, and varies literally based on the government and medical professionals in each culture on the planet. It also varies based on a person’s gender, age, and physical condition.

Some of the reported benefits are related more to red wines than white wines. This is because red wine contains a much higher concentration of resveratrol, a potent antioxidant derived from the skins of red wine grapes. Additional phenolic compounds from grape stems and seeds, and other tannin contributors, also play a lesser but still notable role.

Everything from lowering blood pressure, to increasing “healthy” blood cholesterol, to enhancing metabolism, have all been reported in various tests performed on groups of moderate wine drinkers. In conjunction with a “Mediterranean” diet focusing more on vegetables and fruit, whole grained breads, more seafood and fish and less red meat, and with “smarter” fats like olive oil, are also a factor in some of these studies, as wine tends to go hand in hand with such foods.

All that aside, a glass of really great wine at the end of a stressful work day can have a powerful psychological effect on a person, and the simple act of stress reduction in and of itself can be a powerful benefit.

Disclaimer: This article is not written by medical professionals, and we do not advocate the use of any alcohol to improve your health. We’re simply commenting on things we’ve read over the years.

November 17, 2017 / by / in
Do wines contain antioxidants?

All wines contain some antioxidants. Antioxidants are believed to provide health benefits, though when consumed with alcohol, some or many of those benefits may be lessened or completely nullified.

Red wines contain a much higher concentration of resveratrol, a potent antioxidant derived from the skins of red wine grapes.

Additional phenolic compounds from grape stems and seeds, and other tannins, also contain some antioxidants.

 

November 17, 2017 / by / in
What are some tannin health benefits?

Tannins are compounds found in a wide range of plants, such as coffee, tea, cocoa, and fruits like grapes and cranberries. Tannins health benefits are reported to have a wide range of impact on the human body, some good, others not so good.

Lowered blood pressure, improved immune response, and blood sugar balance are all some of the reported benefits of tannins. Impacted liver function and increased blood pressure are some of the reported dangers of certain tannins.

Disclaimer: This article was not written by medical professionals.

November 17, 2017 / by / in
Can red wine reduce cholesterol levels?

Red wine is reported to assist with boosting “good” cholesterol levels. When consumed as part of a health, balanced, Mediterranean diet, some research points to a reduction in “bad” cholesterol levels. It is unclear as to whether people can consume wine to reduce cholesterol levels.

Disclaimer: This article was not written by medical professionals. Please consult your doctor if you have questions about consuming wine and its effects on your health.

November 17, 2017 / by / in
Any tips on storing wine?

Wines are best stored in a cool, dark place in your house. Preferably, the space will have a stable temperature year-round, and not be actively disturbed. Fluctuations in temperature can cause the wine to “breathe” in the bottle, pulling in air from outside the bottle.

Wine is best stored with bottles on their side, to ensure the corks do not dry out. Dry corks can lead to oxidation and spoilage. If the wine is sealed with a rubber cork or screw cap, they can normally be stored upright.

November 17, 2017 / by / in