Hello Beauties and happy Saturday to you! Ever wonder why red wine is red?
How about a blush wine?
Are there pink grapes? Today’s blog post answers all these questions and more as we talk wine!
The color of wine is driven primarily by the skin of the grape. Have you ever peeled a wine grape?
Almost all wine grapes have a pale yellow flesh. So if you peeled a red wine grape or a white wine grape,
you might not be able to tell them apart. As I said, this is true for most varietals. There are actually a
couple of red varietals that also have a red flesh... but they are not common. So if the flesh, which is
where the juice lives, is almost clear, how do we get so many different shades of red and white wine?
(We will talk about pink later.)
The color of the wine comes from the pigment in the skin of the grape. There are other factors found in
the skins. Tannins, the component that adds to the wine’s structure and age ability is also found in the
skins. The longer you leave the juice in contact with the skins, the more the color and tannins transfer.
This is where science turns into art. Each winemaker has a different view on how much color and
structure the wine will have. Some grapes, like Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah like long contact with the
skins. Other varietals like Pinot Noir and Sangiovese like shorter times. White wines spend very little
time with the skins because they do not need as much color or structure.
So this leads us to the question of how pink wine is pink.... Since there are no pink grapes, the
winemaker leaves red wine grapes on the skins for a very short time, leaving only a slight red hue to the
wine, making the wine only “blush” from the contact. This is why some blush wines are very light pink,
and others are a dark rose color.
The final consideration on color is to remember that color has nothing to do with the sweetness of the
wine. There are very dark wines, like Port, that are very sweet and there are white wines that are bone
dry. Because of this, not all blush wines are sweet... some are very dry and crisp in flavor. Always
remember, taste with your nose and mouth, not with your eyes. Wine color is only one factor in a wine’s
character, wine is a like a multi-faceted diamond it needs to be seen from every angle to fully be enjoyed.
CEO/President of Vincente Living and Lifestyle Expert