Viewing color is a very important step in the wine tasting process, as the first impression is likely to influence the final outcome of your judgment. Dark-colored wines usually make us think of rich tannins, heavier wines, and intense flavors, because the tannins, pigments, and flavors in wine come primarily from the skins of the grapes. In red wines, there are some varieties that can be made darker because of thicker skins or rich anthocyanin content in the skins, but each darker wine has a definite difference in the expression of taste and flavor.1. Dolcetto
Typical aromas: berries, cypress, almond, violet, licorice and coffee.Main appellation: Piemonte (Italy) appellation. Taste expression: smooth and round, fruity and aromatic, with low acidity.
Dozzy Peach is an early-ripening, low-acid red grape variety grown almost exclusively in the provinces of Cuneo and Alessandria in the Piemonte region of northwestern Italy.Dozzy Peach produces smooth, round wines that are fruity and aromatic, often with hints of licorice and almond. Most Dolce peach wines need to be consumed within two or three years, but the excellent Alba and Ovada Dolce peach wines can age for at least five years or more in flavor. Dolce peach is rarely blended with other grape varieties, mainly because it is grown in the Piedmont region, which favors single-varietal wines. Because the skins are so rich in anthocyanins, even the shortest fermentations do not affect the deep ruby red or purple color of Dolce Peach wines. 2. Carmenere
Typical aromas: blueberry, blackberry, blackcurrant, strawberry, cherry, chocolate and tobacco.
Main production area: Chile.Palate expression: spicy flavors with high tannin content. Today, Chile has become the new base for Carmenere. The limited production of Carmenere is often used to make deep-colored, full-bodied wines. This variety ripens later than Cabernet Sauvignon, and if yields are controlled effectively, it can produce extremely high-quality wines that combine the charm of Merlot with the structure of Cabernet Sauvignon. In Carmenere wines, there are often ripe, tomato-like flavors and sometimes rich, herbaceous aromas. 3. Tannat
Typical aromas: raspberry, blueberry, mulberry, dried plum, cedar and leather.
Main appellations: Madiran (southwest France), Uruguay.Expression on the palate: rich tannins and firmness on the palate.
The French name for Tannat means tannin-rich. It is the main ingredient in the production of Madiran wines, and by far the most important grape variety in Uruguay. In the Madiran region, Tannat is often blended with Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Ferservadou, and needs at least 20 months in oak barrels to improve the astringency of its heavy tannins. If Tannat is the most noble in the Madiran region, it is more approachable in the particularly firm reds and rosés of Cotede St-Mont and Irouleguy, and in the reds and rosés labeled Tursan and Bearn (which are less common). In addition, the Tannat grape can be used to make Port and Beaujolais-style wines.4. Malbec
Typical aromas: red currant, black currant, blueberry, plum, cedar, licorice, clove and smoke.Main regions: Argentina, Southwest France. Taste expression: acidity and tannin content are generally medium. Malbec wines are known for their intense black fruit and smoky flavors, and their full-bodied style is just like Cabernet Sauvignon or Syrah wines, but they are usually considerably more affordable. Malbec is mainly found in Mendoza, San Juan and Salta in Argentina, and in the southwest of France, Bordeaux and the Loire Valley. Its aromas are predominantly fruity, including black cherry, plum, raspberry, blackberry and blueberry, and, with ageing, vanilla, grassy fennel, coconut, cocoa and milk chocolate. Its acidity and tannin content are generally medium. 5. Barbera
Typical aromas: cherry, plum, blackberry and rose.
Main production area: Italy.
Palate expression: high acidity, low tannin content.
Barbera is a prolific and malleable red grape variety. The majority of Barbera is used to make predominantly fruity wines. The variety’s main characteristic is its high natural acidity (even at full ripeness), which makes Barbera wines popular in hot climate-producing regions. Barbera can produce a wide range of styles, but these wines all have some commonalities: deep, intense ruby red color; full-bodied, low tannin content; pronounced acidity (more pronounced with excessive yields); and vigorous and high yields.
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