How can we help?

You can also find more resources in our Help Center.

315 terms

Certified Sommelier Exam

STUDY
PLAY
Gamay (Beaujolais)
BUBBLEGUM, BANANA, STRONG CRUSHED GRANITE, strawberry, black cherry, violets, pear drop
Riesling
HIGH ACID, SLATE, PETROL, RS, apricot, peach, lime, lime zest (NW), lime blossom, linear texture
Albarino (Rias Baixas)
JUICYFRUIT GUM, ORANGE OIL, CREAMY TEXTURE, SOMETIMES SLIGHTLY OXIDATIVE (BLANCHED ALMONDS), fresh ripe peach, bright finish
Gruner Veltliner
LENTILS, RADISH, CELERY, WHITE PEPPER, watercress, lime blossom, lime, under-ripe stone fruit, subtle, bitterness on finish
Merlot
PLUM, BLACKBERRY, CHOCOLATE, fern leaf, round shape/texture
Chardonnay
HAZELNUT, SOFT CHEESE RIND, BUTTER/DIACETYL (NW), golden apple, lemon, pineapple (NW), rich texture
Malbec (Argentina)
BLUEBERRY, GREEN COFFEE BEAN, MAGENTA/ELECTRIC PINK RIM, ripe plum, blackberry, violets, bright acid
Cabernet Franc (Loire)
TART RED RASPBERRY, JALAPENO, STEMMY/TWIGGY, MARIJUANA, black currant, red currant, green bell pepper, cut grass, violets, tart finish, pronounced earth, brettanomyces is often encountered
Cabernet Sauvignon
BLACK PLUM, GREEN BELL PEPPER, TOBACCO, SAGE, black currant, edgy texture
Sauvignon Blanc
GRASS, JALAPENO, GOOSEBERRY, grapefruit, tarragon & chervil (OW), passionfruit (NW)
Pinot Noir
CRANBERRY, VIOLETS, BLACK TEA, TOMATO LEAF, black cherry, red cherry, cola nut, strawberry
Tempranillo (Rioja Riserva/Gran Riserva)
STEWED FRUITS, DESSICATED FRUITS, SWEET & SOUR (CHINESE RESTAURANT AROMA), tart red raspberry, tobacco, dill, bay leaf, ripe strawberries, coconut, MP acid, M-MP alcohol
Gewurztraminer (Alsace)
LYCHEE, CANDIED GINGER, BITTER FINISH, rose, potpourri, grapefruit pith
Syrah/Shiraz
SMOKED MEATS/BACON FAT, LEATHER, VIOLETS, raspberry, blackberry, freshly cracked pepper, sometimes blueberry
Grenache
DEHYDRATED STRAWBERRIES, BLACK PEPPER, RAISINS, GRENADINE, OXIDATIVE, SWEETNESS TO THE FRUIT ON THE FINISH, strawberry jam, raspberry, black cherry, powdered sugar
Chenin Blanc (Loire)
BRUISED RED APPLE (OXIDATIVE), CHAMOMILE, WASABI, WET WOOL, PRONOUNCED CHALK/LIMESTONE, honey, tangerine, high acid
Sangiovese (Tuscany)
SOUR RED CHERRY, CHERRY PITH, LEAFY UNDERBRUSH, HIGH ACID, licorice root, fennel, black tea
Pinot Gris (Alsace)
SWEET PEAR, POTTING SOIL, SMALL AMOUNTS OF RS, WHITE FLOWERS, white mushrooms, green apple, honey, slightly bitter finish
Viognier
FRUIT LOOPS, ORANGE PEEL, VANILLA, M-MM ACIDITY, peach apricot, mandarin orange, orange blossom, honeysuckle, mango, weighty texture, bitter finish
Muscat
ORANGE CANDY, ROSE PETAL
Pinot Grigio (Italy)
PEANUT SHELL, FLAT BEER, lemon rind, melon, bitter finish
Nebbiolo
DRIED SOUR RED CHERRY, TRUFFLE, FENNEL, HIGH TANNIN, CINNAMON, MARASCHINO CHERRY, tar, dried rose petal, red licorice, anise, mushroom, clay, high acid, MP-H alcohol
Zinfandel
PLUM SKIN, BLUEBERRY JAM, PEPPERCORN, PEACH YOGURT, cranberry, blackberry pie, high alcohol
Listrac & Moulis
- Lesser appellations
- Cabernet Sauvignon-based wines
- No classified growths
Margaux
- Largest AOC in Haut Medoc
- Wines know for ELEGANCE and FINESSE
- 1 First Growth (Chateau Margaux)
- Other notables: Chateau Palmer, Giscours, Brane- Cantenac
Pauillac
- Considered the epitome of "claret"
- Wines balance POWER and FINESSE
- 3 First Growths: Latour, Lafite Rothschild, Mouton Rothschild
Saint-Julien
- Smallest commune, but 11 classified growths
- Styles combine ELEGANCE and STURDINESS
- 5 Second Growths: Ducru-Beaucaillou, Leoville-Las-Cases, Leoville-Poyferre, Leoville- Barton, Gruard-Larose
Graves & Pessac-Leognan
- Appellation for red AND dry whites
- No ranking; all designated Cru Classe
- Pessac-Leognan AC in northern part
Right Bank Communes (Bordeaux)
- Saint-Emillion (PGCC's are Ausone and Cheval Blanc)
- Pomerol (Petrus, Le Pin, La Fleur Petrus, La Conseillante, Vieux-Chateau-Certan, Trotanoy)
Right Bank Grapes (Bordeaux)
70% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc, 5% minor varietals
Sauternes
- Sits in Graves
- World famous botrytis dessert wines
- Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Muscadelle
- Dry wines labeled as Graves Blanc or Bordeaux Blanc
Saint-Estephe
- Northernmost commune of the Haut-Medoc
- Wines are RUSTIC, STURDY, FULL-BODIED
- 5 classified growths, including 2nd growths (Cos d'Estournel and Montrose)
Left Bank Communes (Bordeaux)
- Haut Medoc
- Saint-Estephe
- Pauillac
- Saint-Julien
- Listrac & Moulis
- Margaux
- Graves
- Pessac-Leognan
- Sauternes
Left Bank Grapes (Bordeaux)
Mostly Cabernet Sauvignon (70%); Merlot, minor varietals (30%)
Medoc First Growths
- Lafite-Rothschild
- Latour
- Mouton-Rothschild
- Margaux
- Haut-Brion
Chablis
- AOC for whites only
- exclusively Chardonnay
- limestone ove Kimmeridgian Clay (think crushed oyster shells)
- region susceptible to late frost
- Grand Cru sites have SW exposure
Chablis Grand Crus (7)
- Vaudesir
- Valmur
- Les Preuses
- Grenouilles
- Bougros
- Les Clos
- Blanchot
- Highest minimum alcohol of Chablis ACs
Cotes de Nuits Appellations (11)
- Marsannay
- Fixin
- Gevrey-Chambertin (8 Grand Crus)
- Morey St. Denis (5 Grand Crus)
- Chambolle-Musigny (2 Grand Crus)
- Vougeot (1 Grand Cru)
- Flagey Echezeaux (2 Grand Crus)
- Vosnee-Romanee (6 Grand Crus)
- Nuits St. Georges (Premier Cru only)
- Hautes Cote de Nuits
- Cote de Nuits Villages
- All Grand Cru in Cotes de Nuits are RED, except Corton (Beaune)
Cotes de Beaune ACs (7 main)
- Aloxe Corton (red Grand Cru is Corton, white Grand Cru is Corton Charlemagne)
- Beaune (Premier Cru only)
- Pommard (Premier Cru only)
- Volnay (Premier Cru only)
- Puligny-Motrachet (4 Grand Cru*)
- Chassagne-Montrachet (4 Grand Cru*)
*2 overlap; 6 total Grand Crus
Cote Challonaise ACs
- Bourgogne Aligote Bouzeron (Aligote)
- Rully (AC & Premier Cru)
- Mercurey (AC & Premier Cru)
- Givry (AC & Premier Cru)
- Montagny AC (white only)
- Premier Cru if more than 11.5% alcohol
Maconnais ACs
- Macon
- Macon-Superieur
- Macon-Villages
- Saint-Veran
- Pouilly-Loche
- Pouilly-Vinzelles
- Pouilly-Fuisse
Beaujolais ACs (5)
- Beaujolais AC
- Beaujolais Nouveau AC
- Beaujolais-Superieur AC
- Beaujolais Villages AC
- Beaujolais Cru AC
Beaujolais Cru ACs (10)
- Saint Amour
- Julienas
- Chenas
- Chiroubles
- Moulin a Vent
- Fleurie
- Morgon
- Regnie
- Brouilly
- Cote de Brouilly
Burgundy (Climate)
- Semi-continental (four seasons; climate issues like frost, rain at harvest, hail)
Basis for Burgundy AOC
Terroir
Soil in Cote d'Or
Limestone (best whites) and Marl (best reds)
Champagne Grapes
- Chardonnay
- Pinot Noir
- Pinot Meunier
Champagne Location
90km northeast of Paris
Airen
Most widely planted grape in the world
Primary Spanish White Varietals
- Airen
- Viura (Macabeo)
- Chardonnay
- Verdejo
- Albarino
Primary Spanish Red Varietals
- Tempranillo (Tinto Fino, etc.)
- Carinena
- Garnacha
- Cabernet Sauvignon
- Mencia
- Monastrell
Cava Varietals
- Xarel-lo
- Macabeo
- Parellada
- Chardonnay
Spanish Wine Classifications
- Vino de Mesa (VdM)
- Vino de la Tierra (VdIT): 60% from region
- Denominacion de Origen (DO)
- Denominacion de Origen Calificada (DOCa, DOC, DOQ): Rioja and Priorat in 1988; Ridera del Duero pending
- DO Pagos: single estates only
DO Pagos Estates
- Dominio de Valdepusa, Finca Elez, Pago Guijoso, Dehesa del Carrizal (Toledo), Senorio de Arinzano (Navarra), Bodegas Otazu (Navarra)
Noble
Aged 12 months in bottle or barrel
Anejo
Aged 24 months in bottle or barrel
Rias Biaxas
- Maritime climate
- 90% Albarino planted
Rias Biaxas Sub-Zones
- Val do Salnes
- O Rosal
- Condado do Tea
- Soutomaiort
- Ribeira do Ulla
Rueda
Produces aromatic whites from Verdejo plus Sauvignon Blanc and Viura
Ribera del Duero
- West of Rioja on the River Duero
- Red wines from Tempranillo (Tinto del Pais) and Bordeaux varietals
- Wines are richer and fuller than Rioja wines with good aging potential
Northwest Spain: Notable Regions
- Galicia (Rias Biaxas)
- Toro
- Rueda
- Ribera del Duero
North Central Spain: Notable Regions
- Rioja DOCa (sub-zones are Rioja Alta, Rioja Alavesa, Rioja Baja)
- Navarra
North Central Spain: Primary White Varietals
- Viura
- Malvasia
- Garnacha Blanca
- Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Verdejo
North Central Spain: Primary Red Varietals
- Tempranillo
- Graciano
- Mazuelo (Carinena)
Red Rioja Quality Levels & Requirements
- Vino Joven: no aging requirements
- Vino de Crianza: one year in barrels, one year further aging
- Reserva: one year in barrels, two years further aging
- Gran Reserva: two years in barrels, three years further aging
Navarra
- Borders Rioja
- Known for Rosado wines
- Five sub-districts
- Reds based on Garnacha, Tempranillo, Cabernet, Merlot
- Whites based on Viura with Malvasia and Chardonnay
Rioja DOCa Sub-Zones
- Rioja Alta
- Rioja Alavesa
- Rioja Baja
Northeast Spain
- Regions: Penedes and Priorat DOCa
- Mediterranean
- Home of Catalunya and Barcelona
Penedes
- Center of Cava production
- Traditional Whites: Parellada, Xarel-lo, Macabeo
- Traditional Reds: Garnacha, Monstrell, Ull de Liebre
Penedes Sub-Districts
- Baix Penedes
- Medio Penedes
- Alta Penedes
Priorat DOCa
- Rugged mountainous region
- Dry temperate climate
- Stony schistous soild
- Varietals: Garnacha, Carinena, Cabernet
South Spain
- Castilla: La Mancha
- Whites from Airen (63%)
- Reds from Cencibel (Tempranillo)
- Large elevated central plateau
- Arid climate with temperature extremes
Valdepenas
Most important DO in Southern Spain
Sherry Grape Varietals
- Palomino (95% of all plantings)
- Pedro Ximenez
- Moscatel: along with PX, used to sweeten blended wines and to add color
Sherry Soil Types
- Albariza
- Barros
- Arenas
Sherry Vinification
- Harvest in early September
- Palomino grapes pressed immediately
- Pedro Ximenez grapes sun dried (Soleo) for use in sweetening agents
- Fortification with neutral grape spirit
Fino vs. Oloroso Sherry
- Finos fortified to 15.5% (let the flor grow)
- Oloroso fortified to 18% (NO intention to let the flor grow)
Solera system
- A method of fractional blending wherein old wine is periodically refreshed with younger wine (no more than 1/3) to ensure consistency
- Wine is taken from a cask in one criadera and blended into a cask fro the next
Biologically-aged Sherry Styles & Descriptions
- Fino: lightest; fortified to 15.5%
- Manzanilla: a delicate style of Fino aged only in the coastal town of Sanlucar de Barrameda
- Amontillado: a Fino that has been left in cask for additional aging and develops a rich, nutty flaor; usually dry, minimum 3 years in Solera and 3 years in cask
Palo Cortado
- A dry style of Sherry that has characteristics of both Fino/Amontillado and Oloroso
- Develops limited flor
Oxidative Sherry Styles & Descriptions
- Palo Cortado: only partially oxidative, develops limited flor
- Oloroso: rich style fortified to 18% and usually long-aged; start dry but almost all are sweetened and sold as Cream Sherries
Sherry Classifications
- VOS (Very Old Sherry)
- VORS (Very Old Rare Sherry)
- Anada
- Almacenistas
VOS
- Very Old Sherry
- Aged 20 years (average minimum age)
VORS
- Very Old Rare Sherry
- Aged 30 years (average minimum age)
Anada
-Vintage dated sherries
Almacenistas
- A single Solera sherry bottled unblended and produced in small quantities
Portugal DOC Regions
- 33 total
- Important ones are Minho (Vinho Verde), Dao, Bairrada, Porto & Douro, Borba, Alentejo, Madeira
Portugal Wine Quality Levels
- Vinho de Mesa: table wines
- Vinho Regional (VR); similar to VdP
- IPR: similar to VDQS or IGT
- Denominacao de Origem Controlada (DOC)
- Garrafeira: reserve wines
Portugal White Varietals
Trajadura, Alvarinho, Loureiro, Gouveio, Encruzado, Maria Gomez, Fernao Pires, Arinto, Roupeiro
Portugal Red Varietals
Touriga Nacional, Tinto Roriz (Tempranillo), Aragonez (Tempranillo), Baga, Ramisco, Trincadeira, Castelao Frances, Joao de Santarem, Periquita
Vinho Verde
- Red, white, and rose wines produced in the Minho province (9 sub-districts)
- Bottled young to undergo malolactic fermentation in the bottle (thus, have a prickle or bubble to it)
- Best whites are from Alvarinho or Loureiro
Douro
- Only a small percentage of grapes grown may be used for Port production
- DOC status for table wines earned in 1982
- Grapes: Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Barroca
Dao
- Terraced vineyards on granite slopes
- 90% red; 10% white
- 12 approved grape varieties
- By law, 20% minimum of red wines must be from Touriga Nacional
- Predominant white grapes are Arinto and Encruzado
Bairrada
- Clay-based soils with chalk
- Sparkling wines from Maria Gomez and Bical
- Red wines must contain a minimum of 50% Baga grape (normally 80%)
- Predominant white grape is Maria Gomez
Regions of Southern Portugal
- Lisboa (formerly Estramadura, Atlantic influenced climate)
- Tejo (formerly Alentejo, Periquita grape, white wines from chalky soils)
- Colares (Ramisco grape, ungrafted vines grown in sand)
- Algarve (red and white, 4 DO districts
Schist
A form of slate with strata which allow the vine roots to penetrate and grow (common in Douro for grapes used in Port)
Port
- Arrested fermentation fortified wine
- Vineyards planted on steep slopes (up to 60 degrees) with schist soils
White Port Varietals
- Arinto, Codega, Malvasia Fino, Malvasia Corada, Rabigato, Vioshino
Red Port Varietals
- Touriga Nacional, Touriga Francesa, Tinta Cao, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Baroca, Mourisco Tinto, Sousao
Pipe
Traditional Port cask holding 500 liters (440L of wine added to 110L of aguardente)
Aguardente
- Neutral grape spirit at 77% alcohol added to port wine
Port Styles
- Tawny Port:
- Ruby Port
Ruby Port & Styles
- Aged in glass, may be ready to drink on release OR aged further in bottle
- Sees less oxygen than Tawny, so it doesn't lose its color
- Vintage Port, LBV Port (4-6 years), Single Quinta Port, Reserve Port
Tawny Port
- Aged in wood, ready to drink on release
- Sees oxygen in the barrel and, thus, loses its color
- Aged Tawny Port (with indication of age)
Vintage Port
- Accounts for less than 3% of all port
- Most expensive, BUT easiest to produce (2 years wood aging)
- Produced from top quintas
- Vintages must be declared and approved by IVP
Late Bottled Vintage Port
- Produced in non-declared vintages
- Fruit sourced from top quintas
- Aged 4-6 years in casks
- Vintage and bottling years must be declared on label
- Some are age-worthy
Single Quinta Port
- Fruits sourced from BEST quintas
- Usually produced in non-declared vintages
- Ageworthy, excellent values
Aged Tawny Port
- True tawnies matured entirely in cask
- After 6 years in cask, wines take on a smooth, creamy character, fruitcake spices
- Age declarations: 10yr, 20yr, 30yr, 40yr (based on how old it "feels")
Colheita
A vintage tawny with a minimum of seven years cask aging
Madeira Grapes (Driest to Sweetest)
- Sercial
- Verdelho
- Bual
- Malmsey
Sercial & Verdelho Vinification Styles
- Dry Madeiras served chilled as aperitifs
- Alcohol is added after fermentation has been completed
Bual & Malmsey
- Medium sweet & sweet Madeiras served with dessert or cheese course
- Fermentation is stopped by addition of spirit
Estufagem
- The heating process causes maderization of the wine, caramelizing sugars and promoting oxidation
- Estufa do Sol - finest wines are cask aged in lodges exposed to the sun for many years
- Estufa - a vat or tank heated by hot water to approximately 120F for 6-12 months
85% Varietal Madeiras
- 3yr, 5yr Reserve, 10yr Special Reserve, 15yr Extra Reserve
Vintage Madeira
- Must be made from 100% of stated varietal
- Must be aged for a minimum of 20 years in wood and 2 years in bottle before release
Vintage Solera Madeira
-19th century style now illegal to produce, but still available on the market
Rainwater
Soft Verdelho-style wine created in the 18th century
Colheita Madeiras
Minimum 7 years aging from a single vintage
Northern Rhone Climate
Continental with LeMistral winds
Soils in Cote Rotie, Condrieu, and Hermitage
Steep slopes with granite soils
Soils in St. Joseph and Crozes Hermitage
Heavier, clay-oriented soils
Northern Rhone Grape Varietals
Whites: Viognier, Roussanne, Marsanne
Reds: Syrah
Northern Rhone Appellations
- Cote Rotie
- Condrieu
- Chateau-Grillet
- St. Joseph
- Crozes-Hermitage
- Hermitage
- Cornas
- Saint-Peray
Cote Rotie
Red wines from Syrah with up to 20% Viognier allowed
Condrieu
White wines from Viognier
Chateau-Grillet
White wines from Viognier from small single estate
Saint-Joseph
- Red wines from minimum 90% Syrah and up to 10% Marsanne and/or Roussanne
- Whites from Marsanne and Roussanne
Crozes-Hermitage
- Red wines from Syrah with up to 15% Marsanne and Roussanne
- Whites from Marsanne and Roussanne
Hermitage
- Red wines from Syrah with up to 15% Marsanne and Roussanne
- Whites from Marsanne and Roussanne
Cornas
Red wines from 100% Syrah
Saint-Peray
Sparkling wines from Marsanne and Roussanne
Southern Rhone Varietals (White)
Roussanne, Clairette, Picpoul, Bourbolenc, Grenache Blanc, etc.
Southern Rhone Varietals (Red)
Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre, Cinsault, Counoise, Terret Noir, Vaccarese, Muscardin, etc.
Southern Rhone Climate and Vineyards
- Mediterranean climate with Mistral winds
- Many vineyards planted on flat valley floor
Gigondas Soil
Alluvial clays
Chateauneuf-de-Pape Soils
- Alluvial deposits and "pudding stones"
Galets
The "pudding stones" found in Chateauneuf-de-Pape responsible for terroir
Southern Rhone Appellations
- Chateauneuf-de-Pape
- Gigondas
- Vacqueyras
- Cotes-du-Rhone
- Cotes-du-Rhone Villages
- Tavel
- Lirac
- Beaumes-de-Venise
- Vinsobres
Chateauneuf-de-Pape
- AC for reds and whites
- 13 grapes authorized
- Minimum 12.5% alcohol content
- Galets
Gigondas
Red wines with maximum with maximum 80% Grenache
Vacqueyras
Red wines from Grenache blends with Syrah, Mourvedre, Clairette, and Bourboulenc
Cotes-du-Rhone
-Base Rhone appellation
- 95% in the Southern Rhone
2009 or 2008 in Cotes-du-Rhone?
2009 Great
2008 Not so great
Cotes-du-Rhone Villages
- 18 villages with elevated status
- Red wines are predominantly Grenache
Tavel
Rose from Grenache and Cinsault
Lirac
Red wines are predominantly Grenache
Beaumes-de-Venise
- Red wines are predominantly Grenache
- Home of a famous Vin Doux Naturel
Vinsobres
Red wines with a minimum of 50% Grenache
Provence
- Well-known for quality rose wines
- Includes Southern Rhone varietals and more
- Bandol
- Cassis
Languedoc-Roussillon
- France's largest wine producing region (750K acres)
- Cinsault-Grenache blends dominant
- Also dry whites and Vin Doux Naturels
- Mediterranean climate
Languedoc-Roussillon Primary White Varietals
Grenache Blanc, Clairette, Picpoul, Bourboulenc, Mauzac
Languedoc-Roussillon Primary Red Varietals
Cinsault, Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc
Languedoc-Roussillon AOCs
- Cotes du Roussillon
- Cotes du Roussillon Villages
- Collioure (southernmost AC in France other than Corsica)
- Coteaux du Languedoc
- Minervois
- Fitou
- Corbieres
- St. Chinian
Vin Doux Naturel
- Produced by adding distillate to a fermenting must (deliberately stuck fermentation)
- Fortified wines typically 15-16%
- Muscat de Beaumes de Venise, Banyuls, etc.
Vin de Liqueur
- Produced by adding distillate to UNfermented must
- The distillate is a local brandy, and the must is from similarly local grapes
- Pineau des Charentes and Floc de Gascogne
Loire Valley
- Known as the "Garden of France"
- France's longest river (625 miles)
- Agricultural center of France
- Maritime Climate to West/Coastal
- Continental Climate to East/Inland
Loire Valley Primary White Varietals
Chenin Blanc, Muscadet (Melon de Bourgogne), Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay
Loire Valley Primary Red Varietals
Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Gamay, Groslot
Loire Valley Major Regions
- Pays Nantais
- Anjou-Saumur
- Layon
- Touraine
- Central Vineyards
Pays Nantais
- Great oyster wines made from Muscadet (Melon de Bourgogne
- Maritime climate
- Muscadet de Sevre et Maine AOC
- Muscadet Sur Lie (must be used in conjunction with one of the appellations
- Sur lie bottling: wines matured on lees for 6-9 months following harvest
Anjou
- Just under half of production is rose
- Whites from Chenin Blanc and Sauvignon Blanc
- Reds and Roses (both AOCs) from Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon
Savennieres
- Anjou AOC
- Dry wines from Chenin Blanc
- Tiny appellation with low yields
- Best wines have great aging potential
- Clos de la Coulee de Serrant
- Chateau de la Roche aux Moines
Layon Valley Wines
Sweet botrytis wines from Chenin Blanc made only in exceptional years
Layon Valley AOCs
- Chaume Premier Cru
- Bonnezeaux
- Quarts de Chaume
- Coteaux du Layon-Chaume
- Coteaux du Layon Villages
Saumur AOCs
- Saumur Mousseux
- Cremant de la Loire
- Saumur Champigny
Saumur Mousseux
- Sparkling wines made from Chenin Blanc with up to 20% Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc
- Best wines made by Methode Traditionelle
Cremant de la Loire
- Saumur AOC
- Minimum 80% Chenin Blanc with Chardonnay and others
Saumur Champigny
- Reds from Cabernets and Pineau d'Aunis
- Best will mature 6-10 years
Touraine AOCs
- Vouvray
- Montlouis
- Chinon
- Bourgueil & Saint-Nicolas-de-Bourgueil
Vouvray
- Grape Variety: Chenin Blanc
- Limestone over tufa
- Wide range of styles (Sec, demi-sec, moelleux, doux, still, petillant, mousseux)
Montlouis
Chenin Blanc wines in the same styles as Vouvray
Chinon
- Red wines from Cabernet Franc and up to 10% Cabernet Sauvignon
- Tufa soils
Bourgueil & Saint-Nicolas-de-Bourgueil
- Same styles as Chinon
- Sandy soils
Central Vineyards AOCs
- Sancerre
- Pouilly Fume
- Menetou Salon
- Quincy
- Reuilly
Sancerre
- Limestone-based soils
- Whites from Sauvignon Blanc
- Reds and roses from Pinot Noir and Gamay (25% total productions)
Pouilly Fume
- Limestone and silex soils
- Whites from Sauvignon Blanc
Menetou Salon
- Adjacent to Sancerre
- White, red, and rose from SB, PN, and Gamay
Quincy
- Whites from Sauvignon Blanc
- Red and rose classified as Vin de Pays
Reuilly
White, red, and rose from SB, PN, and Pinot Gris
Alsace
- Bordered by the Vosges Mountains on the west and Germany's Rhein river to the east
- 51 Grand Cru vineyards
- Purity of fruit and terroir
- New oak rarely used
- Wines labeled by varietal, not by terroir
- Concentrated, full-bodied dry white wines
Alsace Noble Varietals
- Riesling
- Gewurztraminer
- Muscat
- Pinot Gris (Tokay d'Alsace)
- Sylvaner (Zotzenberg only)
Alsace
- Dry with warm, sunny summers
- Rain shadow effect
- Tremendously diverse soils
- Bound by Vosges Mountains and the Rhine
Regions of Alsace
- Bas Rhin (North)
- Haut Rhin (South)
Edelzwicker
- Alsatian blended carafe wine (2 or more grapes)
Vendage Tardive (VT)
- Alsatian late harvest wines
- Rich, full-bodied in style
- Not necessarily sweet
Selection de Grains Nobles (SGN)
- Alsatian dessert wines from botrytis fruit
- Made in small quantities and only in exceptional vintages
Australia Primary White Varietals
Chardonnay, Riesling, Semillon, Muscat, Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Verdelho, Viognier
Australia Primary Red Varietals
Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Pinot Noir, Merlot
Australia
GI originated in 1994 with EU agreement
Label Integrity Program (LIP)
- Introduced in Australia in 1990
- Guarantees all claims made on label (variety, vintage, region, etc.)
- 85% for vintage, variety, and origin
GI Quality Categories
- Produce of Australia: most general; no vontage, variety allowed on label
- South-Eastern Australia Super Zone
- State of Origin
- Zones (e.g. Barossa is a zone in S. Australia)
- Regions (e.g. Barossa is divided into Barossa Valley and Eden Valley)
- Sub-regions: smaller appellations within a region
Australian Wine Producing States
- New South Wales
- Victoria
- Tasmania
- South Australia
- Western Australia
- Northern Territory
- Queensland
New South Wales
- Established in the late 1870's
- Alluvial soild, red clay, sand, and clay
- Hot & humid with cyclonic rains possible
- Semillon, Chardonnay, Riesling, Shiraz
- Hunter Valley (predominantly white, established by Penfolds in the 1960's), Hilltops, Mudgee, Tumbarumba, Orange
Victoria
- Alluvial & volcanic soils, granite, clay, sand
- Cool coastal regions vs. hot inland area
- Chardonnay, Riesling, Muscat, Pinot Noir, Shiraz, Bordeaux varietals (sparkling, still, fortified)
- Yarra Valley, Rutherglen, Heathcote, Bendigo, Mornington Peninsula, Geelong, Murray Darling
South Australia
- Produces 55% of Australia's wine
- Limestone, clays, loams
- Cool southern coastal climates vs. warm northern inland (cool evenings in hilly areas due to altitude)
- Barossa Valley, Eden Valley (wetter, rocky soils, hilly), McLaren Vale, Clare Valley (known for Riesling), Coonawarra ("Terra Rosa" soil and cooler climate = balanced wines), Adelaide Hills, Langhorne Creek, Riverland
Western Australia
- Vineyards established in 1829
- Gravels and sands over clay
- Warm maritime climate, ocean breezes
- Chardonnay, Riesling Bordeaux grapes, Shiraz
- Margaret River (AUS first appellation system in 1978, known for elegance and finesse), Great Southern's Mount Barker, Frankland River, Peel, Perth, Swan Valley (one of the hottest growing regions in the world)
Tasmania
- Volcanic soils, red basalt, low fertility
- Cool maritime climate, high humidity, windy (East facing slopes)
- Chardonnay, Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Noir, sparkling wines
- Hobart, Launceston, Piper's River, Coal River
Transfer Method
- Bottles are disgorged under pressure into large tank, filtered, and rebottled
- Used for bottles smaller than half/larger than Jeroboam
Advantages to Transfer Method
- As little as 90 from harvest to final bottling
- Potential for lees contact
- Eliminates need for riddling
- More suitable for some grapes
Charmat Process (Cuve Close)
- Wine pumped into tanks with liqueur de tirage
- Fermentation complete in 4-5 days
- Best for certain varietals (e.g. Moscato d'Asti, Prosecco, Sekt)
Autolysis
Gradual breakdown of yeasts
NV Champagne Aging Requirements
12 months
Vintage Champagne Aging Requirements
3 years
Liqueur d'Expedition
Used in dosage phase to fill the space left after the yeast remnant pops out
Disgorging/Degorgement
Yeast remnant popped out
Most widely planted grape in Champagne
Pinot Noir
Chardonnay's Role in Champagne
Finesse
Pinot Noir's Role in Champagne
Structure
Pinot Meunier's Role in Champagne
Fruit character
Champagne Dryness/Sweetness Levels
- Brut Zero (Bone Dry)
- Brut (Dry)
- Extra Dry (Off-Dry
- Sec
- Demi-Sec
- Doux
Magnum
2 Bottles
Jeroboam
4 Bottles
Rehoboam
6 Bottles
Methuselah
8 Bottles
Salmanazar
12 Bottles
Balthazar
16 Bottles
Nebuchadnezzar
20 Bottles
Solomon
24 Bottles
Premat
36 Bottles
Champagne Regions (North to South)
- Montagne de Reims (known for PN)
- Vallee de la Marne
- Cote de Blancs (lots of Chardonnay)
- Cote de Sezanne
- Aube
Spumante
Generic term for sparkling
Frizzante
Semi-sparkling
Produces more sparkling wine than any other country
Cava (most in Catalonia)
Highest average bottle price of any country
New Zealand
New Zealand's North Island
- Soils: Mostly alluvial mountain runoff with sandstone, some limestone, schist, clay, and chalk
- Climate: Cool (South) to warm (North) maritime, windy from West (must plant East of mountain ranges), high rainfall and humidity
New Zealand's North Island Regions
- Auckland
- Hawkes Bay
- Gisborne
- Wairarapa
Auckland
- NZ's original wine region
- Home to Kumeu-Huapai and Waiheke Island
- Very warm maritime climate with high humidity
- Heavy clay soils (except for Waiheke Island)
- Known for Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot
Hawkes Bay
- Driest region in NZ
- 2nd in size to Marlborough
- Sandy alluvial soils over gravel, limestone
- Sunny climate, warmest in NZ
- Known for Chardonnay, CS, and Syrah
Gisborne
- Known for Poverty Bay
- High yields and large quantities of Muller-Thurgau
- Bulk wine and carafe wine
Wairarapa
- South end of North Island
- Includes Marlborough
- Quality Pinot Noir (up and coming region)
New Zealand's South Island
- Soils: volcanic, gravel alluvial with sandstone
- Cool maritime climate (warmer north, cooler south), mountain ranges create rain shadow effect
New Zealand's South Island Regions
- Marlborough
- Nelson
- Canterbury
- Otago
Marlborough
- NZ's most important and fastest growing wine region
- Alluvial gravel
- Protected from Westerly winds by South Alps and Easterlies by Southern tip of North Island
- Awatere Valley and Wairau Valley
Central Otago
- Most southerly wine region in the world
- Alluvial soils with outcroppings of chalk and limestone loams
- Potential for Rieslings and sparkling wines
Canterbury
- Quality Riesling and Pinot Noir
- Warm summers, cool autumns, lower rainfall
- Most vineyards in plains surrounding Christchurch
Nelson
- NZ's 2nd fastest growing region (to Marlborough)
- Stony, well-drained soils
- Quality SB, Chardonnay, Riesling, and PN
South Africa
Longest tenure of winemaking in the New World
Cultivars
What varietals are called in South Africa
SA's Primary White Cultivars
- Steen (Chenin Blanc)
- Hanepoot (Muscat)
- Chardonnay, SB, Semillon
SA's Primary Red Cultivars
- Pinotage
- CS, CF, Merlot, Syrah, Grenache, PN
South Africa's Wine of Origin System (WO)
- 100% of grapes from named appellation
- Vintage must be 85% of stated year
- Varietal must be 85% of stated
South African Wine Regions
- Coastal (Stellenbosch, Paarl, Constantia, etc.)
- Breede River Valley
- Olifants River
- Klein Karoo (Sweet Muscadelle and light whites)
- Boberg (for fortified wines only)
Pierce's Disease
Glassy-winged sharpshooter
Tax and Trade Bureau
Regulators of American Viticultural Areas
AVA
- American Viticultural Area
- Refers only to geographic region
- Guidelines finalized in 1978, became mandatory in 1983
TTB Label Laws I
- 75% minimum varietal composition (except OR)
- 95% from year stated on bottle (85% if appellation is state or county)
- 85% from stated AVA (except super AVA)
- Every wine must be labeled with a brand name with the bottler's name and location
TTB Estate Bottled Requirements
- Winery and vineyards must be located in the same AVA
- Winery must own or control the vineyards where the grapes are grown
California Major Regions
- North Coast Super AVA
- Sierras
- Central Coast (Santa Cruz to Santa Barbera)
- Central Valley (south to Clarksburg and Lodi)
- Southern Valleys ( Santa Ynez to San Diego)
North Coast Super AVAs
- Napa County
- Sonoma County
- Mendocino County
- Lake County
- Marin County
- Solano County
Napa County AVAs
Howell Mountain, Chiles Valley, Napa Valley, Atlas Peak, Stag's Leap District, Oak Knoll, Wild Horse Valley, Los Carneros, Yountville, Mount Veeder, Oakville, Rutherford, Spring Mountain District, Diamond Mountain District, Calistoga (most recent)
Sonoma County
- Larger area than Napa Valley with a great range of micro-climates
- Maritime influence an important factor
- Notables include Dry Creek, Rockpile, Alexander Valley, Los Carneros, Russian River
Mendocino County
- Cooler coastal climate with an active sparkling wine industry
- Warm interior with old vine Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Carigange, etc.
- Notables include Anderson Valley (Alsatian varietals), Guenoc, Redwood Valley, Yorkville, Potter Valley
Monterey County
- Santa Lucia Highlands
- Chalone
- San Bernabe
Paso Robles
- One of CA's oldest growing regions
- Significant diurnal swings
- Known for Zinfandel and Rhone varieties
Edna Valley
- South of Paso Robles
- Maritime influence, cool climate
- Chardonnay and Pinot Noir
Santa Barbera County
- Longest growing season in CA
- Series of east-west valleys
- Cool, dry coastal climate
- Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Syrah, Merlot
Appellations shared between WA and OR
- Columbia River
- Walla Walla Valley
- Columbia Gorge
Oregon AVAs
- Southern OR
- Rogue Valley
- Applegate Valley
- Umqua
- Douglas Red Hills
- Snake River
- Columbia River
- Walla Walla Valley
- Columbia Gorge
- Willamette Valley
Willamette Valley Subregion AVAs
- Chehalem Mountains
- Ribbon Ridge
- Yamhill-Carlton
- Dundee Hills
- McMinnville
- Eola-Amity Hills
Washington State
- Young industry
- Semi-continental desert climate requiring irrigation
- Cascade Mountains rain shadow effect; long, dry growing season
- Drastic diurnal shifts
Washington State Appellations - AVAs
- Columbia Valley
- Yakima Valley
- Walla Walla Valley
- Red Mountain
- Horse Heaven Hills
- Columbia Gorge
- Wahluke Slope
- Snipes Mountain
- Lake Chelan
- Puget Sound
New York State
- America's oldest wine industry
New York State AVAs
- The Hamptons
- North Fork Long Island
- Long Island
- Hudson Valley
- Seneca Lake
- Cayuga Lake
- Finger Lakes
Lombardy
- Lugana (Trebbiano)
- Nebbiolo (Chiavennasca)
- Franciacorta DOCG
- Lugana di San Benedetto DOC
- Valtellina Superiore DOCG
Trentino- Alto Adige
- Northernmost region in Italy with steep alpine valleys
- Home of Tocai (now known as Friulano), Lagrein, and Schiava
- Key Regions: Valle d'Isarco, Santa Maddalena, Trentino, and Trento
Veneto
- From Lake Garda in the west to the Adriatc
- Venice and Verona
Appassimento Process
- After harvest, grapes are dried for several weeks
- Used to produce passito, recioto, and Amarone wines
Grapes in Valpolicella and Amarone
- Corvina
- Rondinella
- Molinara
Ripasso
- "Re-passed"
- Traditional winemaking technique in the Veneto
- Young Valp put into tanks or barrels containing lees or dried fruits from previous Amarone fermentation
- Causes secondary fermentation, increasing alcohol content, and adding Amarone character to wine
Prosecco
- Sparkling wine made from Glera (Prosecco) grape
- Superiore DOCG: Conegliano, Valdobiaddene, Colli Asolani
Soave
- Dry white made from Garganega (with some Trebbiano)
- DOCG versions: Superiore, Superiore Classico, Recioto
Friuli Venezia Giulia
- Northeast corner of Italy adjacent to Slovenia and Austria
- Known for whites, but Merlot is most planted varietal
Emilia Romagna
- Central Italy
- The food center of Italy
- Divided by 7 rivers
Tuscany
- Moderate climate
- Tradition, influence, innovation, research
- Maremma, Morellino di Scansano, etc.
Primary Tuscan White Varietals
- Vernaccia
- Trebbiano
- Malvasia
Primary Tuscan Red Varietals
- Sangiovese & clones (Prugnolo Gentile, Brunello, Morellino)
- Canaiolo
- Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah
Chianti Sub-Zones
- All DOCG
- Classico
- Rufina
- Colli Fiorentini (Florence)
- Colli Senesi (Siena)
- Colline Pisane (Pisa)
- Colli Aretini (Arezzo)
- Montalbano
- Montespertoli
Chianti Classico
- Sangiovese and Canaiolo with Trebbiano and Malvasia
- Addition of white grapes no longer mandatory
- Up to 20% CS, Merlot, and Syrah permitted
Brunello di Montalcino Aging
- BdM: 4 years with minimum 2 years in oak
- BdM Riserva: 5 years with minimum 2.5 years in oak
Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG
- Tuscany's dry white DOCG
- Up to 10% Chardonnay and Trebbiano allowed
Vin Santo DOC
- Dessert wine from passito grapes (Trebbiano & Malvasia) fermented slowly in small wooden barrels
- Matured minimum 3 years and up to 6 years
Lazio
- Home of Rome
- Cesanese del Piglio Rosso/Reserva DOCG
- Frascati (carafe wine blended from Trebbiano & Malvasia)
- Est! Est! Est! di Montefiascone
Umbria
- Trebbiano called "Procanico"
- Grechetto, Drupeggio, Sangiovese, and Sagrantino grown
- Best know white is Orvieto
- Torgiano DOC, Torgiano Riserva DOCG, Sagrantino di Montefalco DOCG
Marches
- Adriatic Sea coast
- Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi DOCG
- Conero DOCG, Rosso Conero
Campania
- Recent prominence due to ancient indigenous varietals
- Home of Mount Vesuvius
- Primitivo, Aglianico, Falanghina, Fiano, Greco
- Fiano d'Avellino DOCG, Greco di Tufo DOCG, Taurasi DOCG
Apulia
- One of Italy's largest producing regions
- Over 250 miles of coastline, flat regions of fertile plains
- Montepulciano, Negroamaro, Primitivo, Malvasia Nera, Bombino are primary red grapes
- Brindisi, Salice Salentino, San Severo, Manduria
Sicily
- Mediterranean climate with maritime mountain influences
- Whites: Grillo, Grecanico, Inzolia, Carricante, Catarratto
- Reds: Nero d'Avola, Nerello Mascalese, Nerello Capuccio
Cerasuolo di Vittoria DOCG
- Southwest Sicily
- Blend of Nero d'Avola (70%) and Frappatto (30%)
Marsala DOC
- Siciliy
- Fortified wine in both dry and sweet styles made from a blend including Catarratto, Inzolia, Grillo, etc.
Etna DOC
- Sicily
- Full-bodied reds from vineyards on the slopes of Mt. Etna made from Nerello Mascalese and Nerello Capuccio
- White grape is Carricante (clone of Garganega)
Carricante
Clone of Garganega grown in Sicily
Cannonau
Red grape grown in Sardinia similar to Grenache
Sardinia
- Primary Whites Grown are Vernaccia and Vermentino
- Primary Reds Grown are Cannonau, Carignano, and Nuragua
Germany
- 1/4 annual production of France
- 60% Whites
- Extreme northern latitudes
- Primary Whites: Riesling, Muller-Thurgau, Silvaner, Scheurebe, Weissburgunder, Grauburgunder
- Primary Reds: Spatburgunder, Dornfelder, Portugieser
German Wine Classifications
- Tafelwein: table wine
- Landwein: regional wine
- Qualitatswein bestimmter Anbaugbiete (QbA): quality wine from one of the 13 major regions
- Qualitatswein mit Pradikat (QmP): quality wine determined by the degree of ripeness at harvest; only classification that cannot be chaptalized; 6 QmP levels ranging from driest to sweetest
QmP Pradikate Levels (Dry to Sweet)
- Kabinett
- Spatlese
- Auslese
- Beerenauslese (BA)
- Eiswein
- Trockenbeerenauslese (TBA)
Einzellage
Single Vineyard (2,715)
Grosslage
Collection of vineyards (163)
Bereich
District of villages & vineyards (34)
Anbaugebiete
Major Growing Region (13)
Mosel Valley
- Riesling is king
- VERY steep vineyards with S/SW aspect
- Slate soils
- Delicacy, purity of fruit, racy acidity, terroir, low alcohol, ageworthy
Rheingau
- Riesling & Spatburgunder
- Wines are richer than Mosel, great aging potential, trocken wines are important
- Erstes Gewachs (First Growths)
Rheinhessen
- On the Rhine
- Muller-Thurgau, Silvaner, Reisling, Scheurebe
- Quality extremes: Liebfraumilch (low quality) to Nackenheimer Rothenberg (one of Germany's great vineyards)
Pfalz
- AKA Palatinate
- Warm climate
- Trocken wines important (Grosses Gerwachs)
- Riesling, Scheurebe, Grauburgunder, Muller-Thurgau, Spatburgunder
Ahr Valley
- Volcanic slate soils
- Predominantly reds from Spatburgunder and Portugieser
Nahe
- Best wines are made from Riesling
- Area around Schlossbockelheim and Bad Kreuznach
- Donhoff is a notable producer
Franken (Franconia)
- Wines traditionally bottled in bocksbeutel
- Wines from Silvaner, Riesling, and Muller-Thurgau
Notable Anbaugebiete
- Mosel Valley
- Rheingau
- Rheinhessen
- Pfalz
- Ahr Valley
- Nahe
- Franken
Wachau Wine Classifications
- Steinfeder (11% alcohol)
- Federspiel (Kabinett level)
- Smaragd (Spatlese level)
Austria Major Regions
- Burgenland
- Niederosterreich
- Steiermark (Styria)
- Wien (Vienna)
Niederosterreich
- Wachau: steep vineyards facing the Danube
- Wagram
- Kremstal
- Kamptal
Tokaji
- Renowned botrytis dessert wine from Hungary that has been produced for centuries
- Technically a dry still wine sweetened with botrytized grapes (Aszu)
- Sweetness levels measured in 3-6 puttonyos
- Eszencia is 100% botrytised grapes
Primary Hungarian White Varietals
- Furmint
- Harslevelu
- Muskatoly (Muscat Ottonel)
- Oremus
Primary Greek White Varietals
- Assyrtiko
- Moschofilero
- Malagousia, Roditis, White Muscat, Chardonnay, SB
Primary Greek Red Varietals
- Xynomavro
- Agiorgitiko
- Mavrodaphne