Wine is a sign of aristocracy and grace of taste. Personally, I like to play online casino with a glass of delicious wine. But, how to achieve the right combination of alcohol and grapes when making wine?
The authors note: The perceived fullness response to ethanol concentration in white wine is both unexpected and complex. They go on to state that a mediating factor could be the role of other flavor components on fullness. And that brings me back to Asimov's description. If the cue of over ripe jammy big flavors is removed from the equation do we still perceive the higher alcohol wine (15%) over the lower wine (13.5%). Note that difference is much smaller than what many studies have shown is necessary to perceive a difference. One complicated study from ASEV showed data of wines picked at 13.8% alcohol and capitalized to increase alcohol were not different from wines made from the unadjusted fruit. In other words, alcohol was the only difference and the wines were not perceived as different. (Note that 13.8% is not that low relative to musts in Europe that may be capitalized). The one thing that eats at me with all this is why, why have the Europeans added sugar to their musts for years and years if no difference occurred? Not sure, but perhaps it's because 1) the Noble study did show that lower alcohol can increase sour perception and we all know of Old World Styles acid and 2) if you look at the best vineyards in say Burgundy, they tend to get riper and have higher alcohol so high alcohol must be better, right?
Admitted, most of this data applies for CA.
In many discussions people have beaten the dead, buried, and decomposed horse of balance balance balance. Well, let me say it again. If it's balanced, and isn't too ripe, too jammy, too sweet, do you really care what the alcohol is? This is why I don't look at labels. I've had 15.5% Alc. wines that did not represent the style Asimov described above. I am avoiding the whole discussion of who determines what style is ok (after all, some might say, what's so wrong with a hedonistic over-the-top wine), that's for another post. While many wines at that level do conform to such a style, I think it is becoming clearer that blaming alcohol alone is difficult to do. So I propose a new term for these types of wines: JamWam Wines. Whadduya think?