Your Source For Making Wine and Beer

Mouthfeel of Your Wine

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

As home wine makers we have the ability to control a lot of different variables to achieve the wine that we enjoy.  One of those factors is the body or mouthfeel.  For those of use that are new in the wine scene, let me share this excerpt from Oxford Wine Room.
A wine's body is described as light, medium, or full.  So, when you are tasting a glass of wine, how can you tell which kind of body it has, and just what is body, anyway?  Body is the weight of the wine on your palate.  The best way to figure out any given wine's body is to think about the relative weights of skim milk, whole milk, and half-and-half.  A light bodied wine will feel about as weighty as skim milk in your mouth; a medium-bodied wine will feel like whole milk, and a full-bodied wine will feel like half-an-half.  Another way to think about this; Wine with a rich, complex, lingering flavor is considered full-bodied; one that is watery or lacking in body is considered light-bodied or thin; a medium-bodied wine ranks in between.  Not all wines strive to be full-bodied however, some wines strive for finesse and complexity.  It is also important to remember that the wine's quality and characteristic is influenced in many other ways.  Climate, weather during harvest, and even winemaker's preference can all determine the final outcome of a particular wine.
One way to measure the body of your wine is described in this excerpt from Bacchus Wine Cellar

A wine's body is measured by swirling it around the glass and seeing how long it takes the wine to flow down the sides. Full-bodied wines are heavy and come down the sides of the glass in sheets. Medium-bodied wines are less thick and break into "legs" (lines of colorless glycerin) as they flow down the sides. Light-bodied wines are not heavy and will not cling to the sides of the glass when swirled.

I have taken thin bodied wines and made them into medium bodied by adding more juice after about the second racking.  It will referment, so make sure that you give it enough time.  Current, I am doing it with my peach wine from this year since it was a little thin.  I added in some Welch's White Grape/Peach Juice and it is currently plopping away.


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