Tuesday, September 05, 2006
The "Bigger" Wines
The Cabernet Grape
These days, it seems it's all about the "big wines." And no, we're not talking about the big, bold taste of those nifty "wine cooler" thingies of a decade ago. (Gosh, are those local littles convenience store "refrigerated treasures" still around?) In any case, bred predominantly but not exclusively in places like California and Australia, these wines are said to be markedly different from the traditional wines of countries like France and Italy -- different not only in taste and texture but in alcohol levels and aging potential. And in addition to all other aspects, the big wines, according to this month's Food & Wine magazine, are also about power and pleasure and simple -- unabashed hedonism.
Made from grapes that are totally ripe, they're wines with big, rich flavors, a generous amount of fruit and relatively high alcohol levels -- 15 percent and more. They're also precocious; that is, they're ready to drink upon release, although many will benefit from cellaring.
While select Cabernet wines are considered among these "big wines" and my own beloved Pinot Noir is not -- I'll forgo the "hedonistic" aspect of it all -- and say that I both enjoyed and actually *learned* a few things from the above link to this article. Interesting stuff, indeed.
Good Tuesday, all. Peace.