Wine Words 4

Now to look at 2 different kinds of descriptors, both (ironically) rather hard to describe.  The first has risen in popularity over the past decade, whilst the second might feel more resonant of times past, but most definitely translates to a very of-the-moment sensation.




Minerality | mɪnəræləti |


Refers to both taste & aroma of a wine & very much a reflection of what soil the vines are planted in. Can be salty or flinty & with a lively essence, mineral wines dance on your tastebuds & feel of the earth.


Like: a fresh oyster


For example: “The wine exhibits an intense minerality along with a blue/purple fruit character as well as both the terroir’s and vintage’s tell-tale floral notes. More showy and denser than some recent vintages, it possesses sweet tannin, full body, and admirable richness as well as length. It will require 3-4 years of bottle age, and should drink well for two decades.”


Robert Parker reviewing Beausejour Duffau 2008




Sumptuous bouquet | səmptʃwəs buke |


Refers to the aroma of a wine – a smell that affects all your senses with a rich, deep & sometimes emotional resonance. This sensory overload often translates into how you will taste the wine as tastebuds have already been sufficiently tantalised.


Like: the first lift of the tagine lid before serving


For example: “One of the finest under-the-radar estates in Pessac-Leognan, Haut-Bergey’s 2005 (a blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon and 35% Merlot) offers up aromas of scorched earth, wet stones, burning embers, charcoal, and copious black currant and cherry fruit. The sumptuous bouquet is accompanied by a full-bodied wine displaying dazzling purity, sweet tannin, and a long, opulent finish. This beauty will be drinkable at a relatively early age for a 2005. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2025.”


Robert Parker reviewing Haut Bergey 2005



The Author

Helen Richards

Hely's love of wine was born from a young age, spending summers exploring the vineyards of France. After studying Modern Languages at Oxford, she worked in publishing and branding before joining the JF Tobias team to help build our blog / written content. She loves wine, writing, yoga and adventure in equal measure and strives to balance all four, although not necessarily all at the same time!