When used to describe a wine with flavors or AROMAS slightly reminiscent of herbs, herbal is positive. Good sauvignon blanc, for example, is considered slightly herbal. When herbal flavors become extreme, they are often described… Continue reading


In Austria, a rustic type of restaurant often attached to a winemaker’s home. Traditionally, all of the food at a heurige is made from scratch by the winemaker and his family. Similarly, the wine offered… Continue reading


A modern hogshead, quite a bit larger than a small barrel, holds 79.25 gallons (300 liters). Winemakers use hogsheads when they want the wine to be less stamped by oak, as may be the case… Continue reading


Refers to a wine with a level of ALCOHOL that is out of BALANCE with its ACID and FRUIT. The impression of excessive alcohol produces a slight burning “hit” at the top of the nasal… Continue reading


As used in the Champagne region, house refers to a producer who sells Champagne under its own brand name. The grapes may come from its own vineyards, from independent growers, or most often from a… Continue reading


A new grape variety developed by breeding two or more genetically distinct varieties from different species. When the hybrid is a cross of a European species (VITIS VINIFERA) grape and a grape from any one… Continue reading


Germany for “half-dry”—defined as less than 1.8% residual sugar. The term is used in Germany, but rarely in Austria. Wines labeled halbtrocken usually still taste extremely DRY because of the high corresponding ACIDITY in German… Continue reading