Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, or "Vinny" for short. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the technical aspects of winemaking to the fine points of etiquette. I hope you find my answers educational and even amusing. Looking for a particular answer? Check my archive and my FAQs.
Dear Dr. Vinny,
A few years ago on a wine trip in Napa, we were told that you could tell a lot about a wine by the "legs," such as tannins and alcohol content. Recently I've heard that you really can't tell anything from the legs. What you do you think?
—Taylor C., Winston-Salem, N.C.
The "legs"—the streaks that trickle down the sides of the glass after you swirl it—are created by alcohol. Basically, the more legs, the higher the alcohol content of the wine. I suppose if you study wine legs for years, you might get to a point where you can make an educated guess about the percentage, but if I want to know the alcohol content, I just read the label.
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