Dessert Wine is a type of sweet wine that made mostly from white grapes that are ripe but there also made from red wine. This type of wine are often served with dessert and therefore often called Dessert Wine.
Dessert wines are the perfect accompaniment as well as the replacement for your desserts. These wines are meant for you to enjoy in a small glass and sip patiently like a glass of Scotch. There are a large variety of wine names of this type but there are five primary types of dessert wines:
1) Fortified Wines
Why is Fortified?
Because there is a mixture of alcohol up to 20% in the grape at the time of manufacture .It result in the flavor and aroma that is different from other wines.
These are rich, sweet wines, perfect for dessert. Port is one of these fortified dessert wines which is extremely popular. It has dark red color and has the flavor of spices, plums, and berries. Other such wines include Sherry and Madeira.
These are usually prepared by mixing a fixed quantity of alcohol into the fermenting wine during the process of fermentation itself. This alcohol kills the yeast that grows in the grapes and stops the fermentation process and leaves the residual natural sugars of the grapes still in the wine.
This is how these sweet wines are obtained. They have an alcohol content in the range of fifteen to twenty percent.
2) Late Harvest Wines
This is a top choice of type of dessert wine. In order to produce Late Harvest Dessert Wines, the grapes are left on their vines until they become very ripe and sweet. In the following process of fermentation, the yeast dies before it is able to process all the sugar in these grapes.
Riesling grapes are the preferred choice for late harvest dessert wines as it has high acidity which prevents the final wine from becoming too sweet and keeps it crisp and refreshing.
It goes along well with desserts like the apple pie. If you are looking for such a wine in the store, you will usually find the words “late harvest” on the pack.
3) Ice Wines
Ice wine is dessert wine made from frozen grapes. Apart from rotting, freezing the grapes is another great way to concentrate its sugars and obtain a wine with a sweet taste.
The most interesting part of the harvest is that the grapes are left on their vines long after the harvest is complete until temperatures drop so much that the grapes begin to freeze on the vines.
After this, the grapes are rapidly collected and pressed to remove the water content as ice and obtain the dense sweet juice that is left, which will then be made into wine.
4) Noble Rot Wines
While ‘rot’ may sound repelling, you must be aware that the most popular and expensive wines are produced from grapes that are rotten. For this type of wine, grapes are covered in fungi whose scientific name is “Botrytis cinerea”, which is commonly known as “noble rot”.
It surrounds the grape, which slowly shrivels and leaches out most of its water content and only leaves behind, which is then pressed for juice. This makes it a very labor intensive process as there is very little juice that is left inside the shriveled grapes making it difficult and painstaking to extract.
The most popular noble rot wines are hand harvested and end up with complex flavors with a touch of spice, honey, and exotic fruits.
This type of harvest is rare and the vines may be covered by nets which shield them from birds and warm or stormy weather. Thus the yields are rare, making the wines expensive and very much sought after.
True Ice wine is intense, elegant and crisp at the same time. Also, it pairs well with baked & fresh fruit and desserts like hazelnut cakes and crème caramel.
5) Dried Grape Wine
To make dried grape wine, the grapes are dried on the vine itself using a technique called ‘passerillage’ in France and ‘appassimento’ in Italy. Since the grapes are dried, it is sweeter than the grapes with water.
Just like in the case of grapes and raisins, where raisins are sweeter due to the sugar that is left behind after the water has been dried. Grapes are left, right on the vines themselves, to dry or hung indoors from racks.
They are sometimes even spread out, outdoors to dry in the sun. The final product is a delicious wine with mixed flavors of candied fruits, spices, and honey. At the store, you need to look for packs that mention “Vin de Paille”, which is French for “straw wine”.
It comes from the fact that the grapes are usually laid outdoors on mats made from straw, to dry. You can also look for “passito” on packs with Italian labels.
So if you looking for dessert wine, just looking for this label’s.