14_sensory_evaluation - 87 THE SENSORY EVALUATION OF WINE...

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87 THE SENSORY EVALUATION OF WINE For those who consume wine for pleasure, focusing on its sensory properties can make wine even more interesting. It can reveal details about the wine and how it was made. For those who work with wine, careful sensory evaluation is essential and is the basis for major economic decisions. The human is the most sensitive instrument there is for analyzing wine. As with most things with which we are not very familiar, our first encounters with wine do not usually reveal much detail to us. We typically prefer sweet white wines at first, finding the more bitter flavor of red wines unpleasant. As we become more familiar with wine, we can begin to perceive more detail, more complexity. Most people eventually come to prefer dry wines and to appreciate bitterness and tartness as part of wine flavor. APPEARANCE Wine tastings are conducted with clear glasses so that the color and clarity of the wine can be examined. Natural light is preferred and fluorescent light is avoided if possible. White wines are usually light yellow , but darken to amber with age or oxidation . Red wines are ruby red with a purple tinge when young. With age or oxidation they typically become more brown . Color in a red wine can be more easily discerned by tilting the glass and looking at the edge of the wine. Intensity of color in a red wine may be related to skin contact time and if so may be correlated to bitterness and astringency. But color intensity is also related to grape variety , some varieties (e.g., Pinot noir, Grenache) having less intense color than others (e.g., Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel). Wine should
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14_sensory_evaluation - 87 THE SENSORY EVALUATION OF WINE...

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