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An Introduction to Wine: Tasting Notes - Part Seven

Our seventh and final installment of "An Introduction to Wine" is all about tasting notes and the wines best pairings.

  • Pinot Noir
    • A light bodied, perfect food wine with spice and black cherries developed in the New World. Old World pinots have less fruit but are better paired with game, with earthy tones and balanced.
    • Best paired with grilled salmon, tuna, seabass, various game, quail and soft cheeses. 
  • Merlot
    • Medium to full bodied with soft tannins and a rounded berry, plum, blackcurrant and sometimes spicy or peppery.  When from the New World, merlots tend to be fruity.  The Old World prefers to develop drier and also a fond for blending, where it adds body and a softness to other grapes.
    • Best paired with roasted or grilled meats, mushrooms, tomatoes and pasta. 
  • Cabernet Sauvignon
    • Full bodied, high tannin grapes that ages well from it`s high alcohol content.  Typically good cherry, blackcurrant, mint, vanilla, bell pepper and spice flavours.
    • Best paired with roasted and grilled meats and cheeses.
  • Syrah/Shiraz
    • Full bodied in the New World with lots of jammed fruit, spices, peppers and light in fruit and spice in the Old World, where a drier style is preferred. In all, Syrah is quite varied and can be made in many different styles.
    • Best paired with peppercorn steaks, casseroles and braised lamb.
  • Pinot Grigio
    • A light bodied, crisp wine with refreshing acid served dry.  Fruity on the nose with a lemon and pear taste.  
    • Best paired with light seafood or chicken.
  • Sauvignon Blanc
    • A generally light and crispy dry wine when stainless steel fermented.  Tastes of gooseberry and citrus fruits.
  • Chardonnay
    • Full bodied and generally oaked.  Develops honey, vanilla, nuts and tropical fruits in warm climates.  Cooler climates give a crisper more green apple hint. 
  • Riesling
    • Light bodied and usually off dry with a nose of petrol and damp minerals.  Tastes of apple and minerals
    • Best paired lighter, crisper Rieslings with delicatem or raw fish; if you have a more substantial Rieslings then go with Asian food, chicken, salmon and tuna.
  • Gewurtztraminer
    • A light bodied wine ith a lychess nut nose and a floral, peach and genrally fruity flavour hinted with honey and light spice.  
    • Best paired with Asian cuisine

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Tags: Wine,, Wine Tips, Wine Pairings