Vitis Vinifera

A vine species accounting for most of the wines made in the world today. Such grapes as chardonnay, cabernet sauvignon, pinot noir, syrah, and riesling are all Vitis vinifera varieties. Vitis vinifera originated in Europe… Continue reading

Volatile Acidity

All wines have a tiny amount of volatile acidity, usually, with any luck, imperceptible. In excess, V.A., as it is known, causes a wine to have an unpleasantly sharp, vinegary aroma. Volatile acidity occurs because… Continue reading


A person who makes or sells wine. Often used to describe the owner of a winery who may also employ a winemaker.


The character some wines possess of being somewhat syrupy and slow to move around in the mouth. Alcohol gives a sense of richness to wine only up until the wine is about 13.5% alcohol by… Continue reading




The science of growing grapes.


Grape variety.


The genus of the plant kingdom to which grapevines belong. Within the genus Vitis there are some sixty separate species. The most famous species—and the only one to have originated in Europe—is VITIS VINIFERA, which… Continue reading

Vitis Labrusca

American vine species that generally produces wines that are far less sophisticated and complex than VINIFERA varieties. In particular, LABRUSCA grapes are easily recognizable by their pungent, candy-like aroma and flavor, usually described as FOXY.… Continue reading

Vino Espumoso

General term for SPARKLING WINE.