Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, so this subject matter couldn’t be more relevant! Whether you want to woo your date or split a nice bottle of vino with your girlfriends, we believe everyone should know what buzz words to use when describing a glass of wine. When you come into Marker 32 for your romantic dinner on the town, our bartenders are wait staff will surely be impressed by your “immense knowledge” of wine.
Talk the Talk
Dry: When a customer asks for a “dry” wine, they might not really know what they’re asking for. The term refers to the amount of sugar in the wine, and “dry” specifically means there’s no residual sugar. If you have a taste for black coffee, then a glass of “dry” wine is right up your alley.
Note* It’s almost redundant to refer to a glass of red wine as “dry”. Nearly all red wine is dry, so the term is typically reserved to describe white and sparkling wines.
Tannin: Have you ever taken a sip of wine and your mouth feels 100% dry, completely lacking saliva? You can thank the compounds found in grape skins for that. The compounds, referred to as tannins, add complexity to the flavor profile. Tannic, or high-tannin, wines leave your mouth dry, while low- or medium-tannins are a bit softer, such as a Pinot Noir.
Crisp: This is wine talk for a refreshingly acidic taste. White wines are much more likely to be described as “crisp”, while red wines will likely be described using the previous two words.
Oaky: This is a flavor description used for wines with smoky or toasted flavors, which are often the results of storage in oak barrels. When a wine ferments in oak barrels, the flavor profile changes.
Walk the Walk
Stare at the wine: You might feel crazy, but all the wise guys in the room will be impressed. Before you elegantly sip (or totally chug, we’re not judging) that glass of red wine, notice its color. If it’s a deep red, almost black, the wine will have far more body than a nearly translucent pale red.
Look at the legs: You know those drips of wine on the side of your glass after taking a sip? The “legs” are a result of evaporated alcohol. Wines with a higher alcohol content will have thicker, slower-moving legs, while wines with less alcohol will leave little to no legs on the side of your glass.
Start with a sample size: If you want to sound like you know what you’re talking about, exclusively order wines from one to two regions for awhile. If you get really familiar with Pinot Noirs from Napa Valley, your friends will be seriously impressed with your sommelier skills next time you’re chatting about vinos.
We definitely don’t judge at Marker 32, but we can’t help but notice when someone knows their way around a glass of wine! If you ask for a bone-dry syrah with heavy notes of blackberry, we’ve got ya covered. But hey, if you want the cheapest, sweetest white wine we serve, we like your style too. Do your thang.