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Wine Spectator School

Class 1: Tasting Prep

making distinctive wine
If the basic process of winemaking is pretty much the same for most wines, what makes wines different?
And why is one wine better than another?

The differences come from the grapes, the region and the specific winemaking techniques. These three factors are responsible for flavor and quality.

The grapes are the most important ingredient.

Grape Flavors

Wine aromas, flavors and tastes come mainly from the grapes – even when a wine tastes like black cherry juice or mint or chocolate.

Each grape variety has its own set of flavors. For instance, green apple flavors are associated with Chardonnay and herbal flavors with Sauvignon Blanc.

Grape Quality

Some grape varieties have the potential to make great wines;...

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