There is a lot to learn about drinking wine. From different varieties to different brands to even the simple question of red versus white, there are hundreds of details for beginners to absorb. There are many different ways to learn to appreciate wine; some people jump right in the deep end while others take steps. Joining a wine club and absorbing the knowledge little by little is a great start. While some may think that the various varieties and brands make up all there is to learn, composition and chemical reactions also play a large role in wine.
Is it “raining” in my wine club?
As most wine experts will tell you, wine doesn’t always keep very well. While some varieties can be kept for short periods of time, others go bad quite quickly. Precipitation is a chemical change in wine that many novices do not expect. Essentially, precipitation in wine works as it does in weather. Particles are formed in a wine under certain circumstances, such as heightened levels of tartaric acid or tannins, giving wine a cloudy or dusty appearance. Once precipitation occurs, a wine’s flavor becomes stronger, either drier or more acidic, dramatically changing the flavor and making it less pleasing to consume.
Temperature plays a large role in whether or not precipitation occurs in wine. Just like how intense temperature changes and moving fronts can cause water to build up in the air, changing a wine’s temperature can cause precipitation. Depending on the variety of wine, precipitation can occur when wine is either too hot or too cold. The variety of wine matters, of course; some wines are more prone to instability than others.
If you join a wine club and are worried about your new wines being ruined by precipitation, there is a temperature stability test you can use to ensure quality every time. When you open a new bottle of wine and are curious about its properties, you can test precipitation possibilities by freezing a small amount and heating a small amount. If the wine thaws or cools cloudy or dusty, it is likely precipitation will occur in your wine.
Precipitation is a complicated potential in wine that most beginners don’t understand or even know to consider. The more you learn about wine, the more factors you can use to evaluate whether or not a wine fits your taste or to judge its qualities. If you are hoping to break further into the world of wine and expand your knowledge, joining a wine club might be the right opportunity. With the chance to try hundreds of varieties and learn more about ingredients, chemical changes and the subtle differences between each bottle, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a wine connoisseur, precipitation or not.