Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Squid on the Vine: The Mixed Blessing of Sugar

Fratelli Levis, Piemonte Barbera
Floral nose
Starts sweet.  Finishes bitter.
Touch of spice
My rating: 8.3

Frederic Mallo, Rosacker Vieilles Vignes, Alsace Grand Cru Riesling, 2010
Peachy finish
Starts sweet, bitter, then sweet again.
Dark yellow
I have a sentimental attachment to this particular vineyard for reasons I won't go into here but it's possible my rating is slightly inflated by bias.  Even so, it is genuinely good.
My rating: 9.0

Stefan Meyer, Ein Liter Rhodt Red Blend
A little jammy but enough bitter to keep it honest
Finishes sweet, then bitter, then sweet.
My rating: 8.4

As I sort out my wine preferences (see here), I am finding one common element for both reds and whites: I like it sweet - not too much, mind you, but I definitely want it there.  I love fruit and a grape is a fruit.  I'm not looking for Welch's but I want to know I'm consuming a fruit.

With reds, the adjective I seek is "jammy," which implies a particular mouth feel along with the sugar, a pronounced sense of volume.  Too much sweetness, though, and it wouldn't taste like wine anymore, just juice with a kick.  For whites, Rieslings are definitely heading in the right direction.  The German offerings, however, tend to be too sweet.  The Alsatians like the example above, on the other hand, are just right.  The Stefan Meyer listed above could have done with a bit more spice (indication of alcohol content) but the sugar level was good.


  1. I think I got past sweet at some point.
    Not that I don't like sweet, but they are not my favorite anymore.
    Barefoot had(has?) a wine called Sweet Red that was my favorite many, many years ago.
    These days it's Apothic Inferno.

    1. I'm a little surprised to find that sugar is so important to me, though I suppose I shouldn't be. I love sweets, in general. However, wine needs more, too. That spiciness is an important part of the ideal melange.

  2. I like sweeter wines and I love the German wines to be honest....give me a good Mosel or Gewurtstriminer

  3. I'm not much of a wine drinker, but tend to prefer a drier red (but I'll take a beer or whisky instead)


  4. Alcohol is out for me since my heart went bonkers, but at times I did enjoy a glass of wine with my dinners. I've now come to greatly miss those occasional glasses.

    1. I haven't done any mocktail posts in a while. I should get back to that.