Course: Understanding Wine
If you were to leave a wine glass containing just a few drops of red wine and return to it a day or two later, you would find that the water and alcohol had evaporated, leaving just a dry, red stain in the bottom of the bowl. That stain consists of flavor compounds, pigments, sugar, tannins, acids and minerals -- in short, all the solids of wine without the liquids.
These solids are called dry "extract" (because they are "extracted" from the grapes during fermentation) and the process of capturing them as "extraction."
The amount of solids that can be extracted depends on the grape variety. Grapes containing high levels of solids -- complex varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon -- can...
• FREE enrollment in any course at Wine Spectator School
• Over 230,000 searchable ratings and tasting notes
• FREE mobile access so you can research wines wherever you are
• E-newsletters with advance ratings
• Editors’ blogs
• Food and wine matching tool
• And much more
If you have questions about Wine Spectator School, please contact us.