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Creamy / Buttery Wines

Creamy and buttery characteristics in wines are often associated with a specific winemaking technique and grape variety.

This texture & mouthfeel is often accompanied by aromas of butter, vanilla, or caramel

  1. Malolactic Fermentation (MLF): Creaminess and a buttery texture in wine are often a result of malolactic fermentation. This process, which can be induced or occur naturally, involves the conversion of sharp malic acid (found in green apples) to softer lactic acid (found in milk). The byproducts of MLF include diacetyl, a compound that imparts a buttery flavor.

  2. Lees Aging: Aging the wine on its lees (sediment consisting of dead yeast cells) can contribute to a creamy mouthfeel. The contact with the lees during aging adds texture and complexity to the wine.

  3. Oak Aging: The use of oak barrels, particularly new or lightly toasted barrels, can introduce creamy and vanilla notes to the wine. This is common in many Chardonnay wines that undergo oak aging.

  4. Grape Variety: Chardonnay is a versatile grape that can exhibit a wide range of styles, from crisp and unoaked to rich and buttery. The grape's inherent characteristics, coupled with winemaking choices, contribute to the final flavor profile. There are other grape varietals, such as Spanish Viura, or French Rousanne, that can exhibit similar characteristics

  5. Mouthfeel: Creamy and buttery wines often have a fuller, more rounded mouthfeel, providing a sense of richness and viscosity on the palate.

New World Wines from regions like California, especially those labeled as "California-style" or "New World," are often associated with the buttery and creamy style of Chardonnay. Many winemakers in California embrace the use of malolactic fermentation and oak aging to achieve this profile

 

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