Author: Lydia Afonso
Date created: 2016/04/11
A simple visualization of primary flavor components in white wines and how they are expressed in different varieties. This chart contains 16 common white wine varieties and 10 primary flavor components in varying degree.
Flavor Profiles of Different White Wines
Understanding the intricacies of different white wines starts with identifying each variety’s primary flavors. While there are some unique examples, most white wine aromas can be categorized in the following 10 groups:
- Citrus Fruit: Including aromas of lemon, lime, grapefruit, orange and citrus zest
- Stone Fruit: Including aromas of nectarine, peach, apricot, apple and pear
- Tropical Fruit: Including aromas of pineapple, mango, kiwi, leechie, passion fruit
- Honey: Sweet honeyed smells or a beeswax-like quality in the wine
- Overall Body: From light to rich
- Creaminess (or Oiliness): Sometimes a creamy aroma and often a texture of oiliness on the palate
- Minerality (or Astringency): A textural quality of slight grittiness or an aromatic quality that smells like freshly wetted asphalt on a summer day (aka petichor)
- Bitterness: A distinct bitter, quinine-like taste
- Herbaceous Aromas: Grassy, herbal or other “green” aromas in the wine
- Floral Aromas: Flower smells from light white flowers to intense rose
Where do these aromas come from?