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Wine Spectator School

Class 2: Tasting Reds


More Complex Varieties

Among reds, only more complex grape varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Nebbiolo, Tempranillo, Pinot Noir and Syrah have the quantity and proper balance of components to produce wines that will age well.

Grape Quality and Winemaking

But not every wine made from these varieties will have a long life in the cellar. Ageworthiness depends on the quality of the grapes and the winemaker's skill.

The quality of the ingredients is key. There's an old saying among winemakers, "You can't make good wine from bad grapes. It takes great grapes to make great wine."

Assuming that the grapes themselves are outstanding, it's the winemaker's job to transmit their quality into the wine. If he or she succeeds, then...

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