California Cabernet | Wine Spectator School | Wine Spectator
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Wine Spectator School

Class 1: Cabernet and California



White wines have three main components: fruit, acidity and alcohol. Red wines have four: tannin is the additional ingredient.

Tannin contributes a distinct mouthfeel, fuller body and the ability to age.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel associated with tannin can be compared to the textures of different materials:
  • Lower levels of tannin feel smooth, like silk.
  • Medium levels of tannin feel slightly more textured, like velvet or soft suede.
  • Higher levels of tannin feel rough, like fur rubbed the wrong way, heavy cotton or tweed.

Body: Red wines are generally more full-bodied and heavier than whites because they include tannins and pigments....

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