Choose The Perfect Wine For Every Occasion

Very often, our enjoyment of our meal is ruined because we are too nervous about which wine to serve with it.  This is especially true of those who have just begun to delve into the delicious world of wines and still feel too inexperienced to make the proper choice.  The first thing to remember is that most wine experts will tell you that the best wine to go with a meal is one that you enjoy.  Red wines are supposed to be best with meat dishes, or game, and whites go well with chicken or fish.  Red wines have a fuller, stronger flavor than whites, and the concern is that a red wine will overshadow the taste of more delicately flavored foods are great with empanadas.

Red And White
Red and white wines get their coloration, and strength, from the way that they are made.  Red wines are made by putting the whole grape into the press – stem, skin, pulp, juice, and seeds.  The skins are what give red wines their rich color and stronger flavor.  When making white wines, only the juice is used for fermentation.  It is quite possible to make a white wine from a purple grape as only the juice will be utilized. 

Beyond Red And White
It is true that red and white are the basic designation of wines, but there are a number of other considerations that can influence your choice of a wine.  Becoming even a bit familiar with the different kinds of wine can help to expand your enjoyment of every meal.
•    Crisp wines are quite acidic and will actually cause you to salivate.  Crisp wines are usually served at the beginning of the meal to stimulate your appetite and make your mouth water.  These wines are also called bright or lively wines.
•    Sweet wines have a good deal of sugar in them.  When wine is made yeast is added to convert the sugar from the grapes to alcohol.  Sweet wines still have quite a bit of the original sugar present.  You will be able to taste the sweetness of the wine when you sip it, but the sweetness will have no smell, as such.
•    Dry wines have little or no sugar in them.  These wines also have a tannin taste as a result of the tannin leaching out of the pits, stems, or skins.  Dry wines can be either red or white, and are thought to be especially good when you don’t want your beverage to overwhelm the food.
•    Fruity wines have a definite fruit smell and taste.  You can actually smell the fruit in the wine, such as cherries or strawberries.  Fruity wines have very little tannin in them and are usually a light or medium weight wine.  These wines can be either sweet or dry, but regardless, you will always be able to detect the odor of fruit.  Most wine experts consider that fruity wines are great with nearly any food.

The Difference Between Mature And Young Wines
Obviously a young wine is one that has not been aged for very long, but there are differences other than the length of time that a wine has been in the cask that differentiate young and mature wines.  Some wines lend themselves perfectly to a brief time in the cellars, and most white wines fit into this category.  In fact, white wines do not age gracefully and are best enjoyed when they are young.  Crisp and fruity wines are better when they have not been aged, and can lose their special taste in as little as 2 years.  A few whites will age well, but as a general rule, enjoy your whites while they are young.
Red wines contain a good deal of tannin from the pits, stems, and skins of the grapes that they were made from.  Aging these wines in oak casks allows the wine to become more mellow and less harsh.  The tannins are broken down as the years pass, but the wine becomes more flavorful and full-bodied.  The cask itself adds flavoring to the wine, as the gradual oxidation that the wood allows develops a deeper color as well as smoothing the flavor of the wine.

People just starting into the world of wine often worry about vintage.  Fortunately, vintage simply refers to the year in which the wine was made.  The reason that vintage is important is because the weather that occurred during that year will have a profound effect on the quality of the wine.  Some wines are developed best when their grapes ripened under warm, sunny skies, while others do better when the weather has been a bit chilly and wet.  A bit of research, and asking questions when you are confused can help you to become a bit of an expert yourself.  And always remember, the best wine for you is the one that you enjoy most.