Structured wine, what does it mean?

The term "structured wines" refers to wines that have a good structure, that is, a balanced combination of various elements that contribute to their complexity and balance. The structure of a wine is an important characteristic that affects its overall quality and its ability to age. Here are some key elements that contribute to the structure of a wine:

  1. Tannins: Tannins are chemical compounds found primarily in the skin, seeds and stems of grapes. They contribute to the structure of a wine by giving it a certain degree of astringency and contributing to the "body" sensation of the wine. Red wines tend to have a higher presence of tannins than white wines, and the quantity and quality of tannins can vary greatly between different red wines.

  2. Acidity: Acidity is another important component of a wine's structure. Acidity gives freshness and liveliness to the wine and helps balance the overall flavor. Wines that are too acidic can be unpleasant, but well-balanced acidity is essential to the structure of many wines.

  3. Alcohol: The level of alcohol in a wine affects its structure. Wines with a higher alcohol level may have a greater sensation of "warmth" in the mouth, while wines with a lower alcohol level may be lighter and less structured.

  4. Residual sugars: The amount of residual sugars in the wine affects its sweetness. Sweet wines will have a different structure than dry ones, with a fuller body sensation and a different perception of taste.

  5. Dry extract: Dry extract is a measure of the amount of solids present in wine, including compounds such as polyphenols, pigments and minerals. A greater amount of dry extract can contribute to the structure of the wine.

In general, a structured wine is balanced and has a harmonious combination of these elements, which contributes to its complexity and aging potential. These wines often offer a full mouthfeel and structure that makes them suitable for ageing, meaning they can improve with time in the bottle, developing new aromas and characteristics.

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