Do you have
questions about wine? Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) and the
What is wine?
Wine is an
alcoholic drink made from fermented grapes and the juices of fruits. Its effect
is intoxicating and stimulating when imbibed. Making wine is probably one of the
oldest human activities as it was already well developed during ancient times.
In fact, ancient Greek paintings (on walls and vases) already show how important
wine-making was then.
Where are wines made?
Almost every country in the world makes wine.
Nonetheless, Mediterranean countries are known to make the most number and
variety. The countries of France, Italy, Spain, Portugal and Greece are known
wine producers. Lately, even California (US) and Australia have made exciting
forays in wine production. Even the Philippines has it’s own wines made from
fermented rice, sugar cane juice, and the sap of the coconut flower.
Where do the best wines come from?
countries have their partisans. Nonetheless, France seems to have the upper hand
with the regions of Burgundy and Bordeaux leading the rest. Of the
wine-producing regions, the wines of Burgundy seem to be “stronger” since
they have higher tannin content. On the other hand, those of Bordeaux are said
to be softer and fruitier in taste.
Why are there different wines crystal glasses for different wines?
Wines have different
bouquets. As such, the shape of different wine glasses aid wine drinkers in
differentiating and savoring the distinct aromas. For example, brandy snifters
have large bottoms that taper towards the rim to enable drinkers to heat the
brandy and thus release its bouquet. Some shapes however, are meant to keep
glasses longer. Champagne glasses for instance, are flute-shaped to do just
Should wines be chilled?
Sometimes. Red wines should at least have a
temperature of 60º to 65ºF (less than room temperature), while white wines
should at least be 45º to 50ºF.
Should wine glasses be filled to brimming?
Not really. Brandy
snifters for instance should at least be only 1/3 full. On the other hand, red
and white wine glasses should at least contain the equivalent of a half-cup of
the respective wines. The exception would be champagne glasses. They should be
at least ¾ glass full, especially during festive occasions.
How should wine be stored?
Wines should not be drunk
immediately when bought. They should be given time to settle so that whatever
“deposits” they contain (especially for old wines) can rest. The best place
for storing wine is a wine cellar. How ever, since having a cellar is not the
norm in the Philippines, make sure that wines are stored in darkness at 10º to
13ºC. Do not store wines where sunlight can get to it, they might turn to very
Should wines be stored standing or on the side?
Store wines on their
side. Doing so would enable the cork to remain moist and swollen. Thus, the
corks help keep air out of the contents, while stopping wine from seeping out.