Ever seen people tasting wine and talking about things like "oakiness," "fruitiness," or "tannins"? Wonder what all that means?
The secret: Wine doesn't just taste like grapes. One of the things that makes wine so special is its vast array of different flavors in just one sip--from chocolate to cherries, grass to minerals, peaches to prunes, oak to butter.
Also, wine can be acidic with a "bite," which can help balance out a wine's sweetness, especially in lighter whites like Sauvignon Blanc or Riesling. Wines from Washington state tend to have great acidity because of the long, hot summer days and cool nights that allow for longer hang time.
We've explained some of the most commonly used wine terms below, and paired them with recipes that showcase these particular characteristics. Read on and soon you'll be tossing out lines like, "sour cherries and chocolate, with an oaky tannic finish" with the best of them!