As part of our drive to become your "go to" website for all things wine related we have been working recently on beefing up our blog. Moving the website onto Shopify in May means that we now have a much more flexibilty and control over our presentation and content and having more informative and wide ranging blog content is something that we have spoken about for some considerable time (if only there were 50 hours in a day!)
During our morning Skype meeting yesterday, I mentioned to The Boss that I planned to do a series of emails (and blog posts) about the fundamentals of wine, as a base for other, more specific topics and that this week's was going to be a guide to the nine different styles of wine. This elicited a raised eyebrow and a (facetious, I'm sure) response of "But surely, there's only two? Red and white!" (He refuses to accept that Rosé is anything other than a figment of my imagination and steadfastly only drinks Claret, occasionally preceded by Sauvignon Blanc!)
I assured him that there are indeed (at least) nine and I'd like to touch on each one briefly today, before going into more depth over the next few weeks.
When buying wine, most of us, as so often in life, tend to stick with what we know. Whilst this isn't necessarily a bad thing, you could be missing out on things you don't even know you like. It's important to to have a little bit of knowledge, so that you at least have an idea of what's going on. Imagine watching a game of rugby (or, God forbid, American football) with absolutely no idea of the rules or scoring. Baffling. A decent sized wine aisle in the supermarket can be much the same.
So, what are these nine wine styles?
1. Sparkling Wine
2. Light White Wine
3. Full-Bodied White Wine
4. Sweet White Wine
6. Light Red Wine
7. Medium Red Wine
8. Full-Bodied Red Wine
9. Dessert Wine
Background: If you already love sparkling wine, give yourself a pat on the back for your exquisite taste, you are not alone. Sparkling wines are the most technically challenging and time intensive wines made in the world. Annual consumption in the UK has risen from 121.5 million bottles in 2008 to 175.5 million bottles in 2018. Much of this (110 million bottles) is down to the spectacular emergance of Prosecco as the bubbly of choice.
What to try: Champagne is often too price restrictive, so instead keep your eyes peeled for Brut-level sparklers (i.e. not sweet) like Cava, Prosecco, Crémant or perhaps even an English sparkling wine such as Bolney Cuvee Rose 2017 or Ridgeview Marksman 2015, both in the BBC Good Food Top 12 English Sparkling Wine list. According to Nielsen figures for the UK off-trade in 2018, sparkling wine had an average price of £7.22 per 75cl bottle, while Champagne had one of £23.25.