Aroma of the Wine

Aroma of the Wine

When vintners explain something about wine, it is for many not understandable. They talk about tunes, transparency, perception, color pigments and aroma of the wine. Do they talk about pictures or wines? In reality, these terms of experts for describing appearance, taste and aroma, however, are very specific.

The aroma of the wine is a major feature for recognizing wines. Aroma is perceived by the olfactory sense. People are able to distinguish between 400,000 different smells. There is a detailed classification of wine aromas:

1. Fruits
raspberry, cherry, apple, currant, strawberry, peach

2. Dried fruits
almond, walnut, fig

3. Blossoms
orange, elderflower, rose, violet, mugwort

4. Wood and harsh Aromas
wood, pine, resin, tobacco, fern, underwood, moss

5. Aromatic Herbs
pepper, onions, clove, thyme, anise, laurel, vanilla, nutmeg

6. Roasted Aromas
toast, coffee, cocoa, smoked aromas

7. Animal Aromas
butter, leather

8. Minerals
flint, silica, clay, copper, iron, aluminum

9. Chemicals
colors, solvent, varnish, tar, oil

10. Vegetables
green pepper, tomato leaves

Vine is a plant of many different kinds. Soil condition, age and the kind of maceration can be responsible for many different aromas even if it is the same kind.
Three different categories of aromas are distinguished: primary, secondary and tertiary aromas.

Primary aromas
Primary aromas, which can later be tasted in the wine, derive from the specific grape variety (pulp, leaves, skin, seeds). Critical factor with primary aromas are the essential oils, which is contained in grape skin and leaves. The grapes with the highest sugar content produce the most primary aromas, as Muskat, Malvasia, Aleatico and Gewürztraminer.

Secondary aromas
Secondary aromas emerge during fermentation by yeasts and lactobacilli. The Lambrusco develops its violet aroma during this process period.

Tertiary aromas
Tertiary aromas develop during the maturing of the wine. It can take on different kinds of aromas from the wooden barrels, the metal tanks or the bottles.

The aroma of the wine is a basic factor for the appreciation for a good vintage.