Myths & Truths About Wines
1. To make rosé wines, mix white wine and red wine
Have you ever heard that to make rosé wines you mix red wine with white wine? Nothing is more false than reality. Rosé wines currently have their production methods. But the first wines consumed by mankind were made from red grapes, and the result was more like a rosé wine than red wine.
This was because until the 13th century winemaking techniques were very rudimentary, the grapes were just trampled, so the colour was dark pink.
Spain, for example, has claretes wines which, although not differentiated by colour, which is also pink, are differentiated by the way they are made.
This vinification practice is because in the past, especially in the areas of Aragon, Navarra and La Rioja, the estates were planted with red varieties and some mixed varieties of white grapes. They put the varieties in the same press, so that resulted in light pink, hence the name claret. Today, red and white grapes are vinified separately and then mixed.
2. Wines get better over time
Another myth that we all heard is that all wines get better over time.
There is also a part of the truth here, which is what we apply to red wines for ageing, that is, all those red wines of Crianza, Reserva or gran Reserva. The wine evolves in the glass, but we must be careful, because the wine is dynamic and, as such, it undergoes transformations, which can be for better or worse, so we must take the utmost care to preserve it.
The place where we keep it must be at a constant temperature between fifteen and sixteen degrees celsius, it must be a dark place, without noise or vibration.
3. We can keep the bubbles of a champagne with the help of a spoon
This holiday season, I've been consuming quite a bit of sparkling wine, either champagne or cava, and the next myth is to put a metal spoon inside the open bottle to keep the bubbles out.
This is completely false because carbon dioxide is a gas that evaporates when the bottle is opened.
Only the cold slows down this carbon dioxide leak, so we always recommend keeping the sparkling wine at a temperature of five degrees. If there is anything left, the only way to prevent the gas from escaping is to use a sealed plug.
4. White wine is only for fish
Another myth that confuses people the most has to do with food pairing. Of course, a combination is always complex, because you have to make sure that the association of the wine with the dish is as appropriate as possible, otherwise it can spoil the flavour of the dish.
But even so, the myth that fish only matches white wine and meat can only be associated with red wine is not true.
Nowadays, there are a lot of white, mature, full-bodied wines on the market with enough structure to be paired with meat dishes, or young and fruity red wines that combine perfectly with fatter fish or baked fish with potatoes or vegetables.
5. White wine has less alcohol
Our next myth is about the alcohol content of wines, it is said that white wines have less alcohol than red wines.
This myth has some truth in it because the alcohol content for a light white wine starts at ten and a half degrees celsius and often does not exceed thirteen and a half degrees, but in the case of sweet white wines, for example, which is made with white wine, the content of alcohol can reach perfectly up to sixteen or seventeen degrees.
We can find white wines for ageing, in a small number, but there are, especially those made with Godello grape variety, in the Bierzo region, in Spain, where the alcohol content would be around fourteen degrees.
As you can see, some myths are not entirely true, there are always exceptions.
Currently, we can find on the market white wines with very low alcohol content, between six and seven degrees celsius. They are very light wines, although with a lot of fruit, which is addressed to a young audience that is beginning to be introduced to the world of wine or people, for health reasons, cannot drink high-alcohol wines.
6. White wines are for women, red wines are for men
Who among you has never heard the expression that white wines are for women and red wines for men?
An outdated categorization for our times, because both women and men choose their wines freely according to their taste preferences. We can talk about wines for beginners and connoisseurs because the sensitivity to astringency and tannins of a strong red wine is not given by gender, but rather by lack of experience.
7. The wine is tasted to decide whether we like it or not
Another myth, which also has its share of veracity, is that in restaurants they let us taste the wine to see if we like it or not.
The wine is tasted to find out if there is a defect in the wine that is related to a defect in the cork, which is called TCA (trichloroanisole). We notice the defect when tasting a musty cork aroma. In case this happens to you, subtly tell the waiter that he should change the wine.
Currently, cork is widely used, and during its manufacture, each cork is subjected to a thorough and continuous control to avoid halonisol contamination.
Claretes and rosé
Sierra Cantabria from DOC Rioja, a full clarity, is one of those wines that tend to be confused because it has a beautiful pink colour, but is obtained from Tempranillo and Grenache red grape varieties and Viura white grape varieties, although the three varieties are macerated with the skin so that the extraction of aromas is optimal, the expression in the mouth is sinuous and expectant, it also has a perfect balance, essential in quality wines.
Lagar da Costa, a wine made entirely from Espadeiro red grapes, a variety native to Galicia, pleasant wine with a very seductive raspberry colour, full-bodied and well-structured, very aromatic and with notes of spices, because it spent four months in French oak barrels before being bottled.
White wines with a lower and higher alcohol content and a red wine for ageing.
Dulce de Invierno, a wine obtained from the Verdejo and Muscat grape varieties, is perfect to be drunk cold with a plate of creamy cheeses, or slightly spicy, an ideal wine to be drunk alone, because it has only ten degrees alcohol, is fresh and light and can be boasted that it has a perfect balance between sugar and acidity.
Losada Godello, a single-variety Godello del Bierzo with fourteen degrees of alcohol, a wine from vineyards planted at an altitude of six hundred meters, eighty per cent of the must is aged on its fine yeast for six months in steel tanks and the remaining 20% is aged in French oak barrels of five hundred litres, which allows it to retain all the expression of the fruit and turn it into a wine with a volume and a special personality, one of those wines that fit perfectly with meats.
Finca Cascorrales, a maturing wine that continues to evolve into the glass, is one of those wines capable of arousing the most hidden emotions, without a doubt one of the best wines in Ribera del Duero.
We hope that we have been able to clear up all the doubts about the myths that have accompanied us all our lives about the world of wine. Discover all the above recommendations and many other options in our store.
We thank our good friend Isabel Zaro for the information presented in this article.
See you next time, wine lovers,