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Vegetal Wines

Some wines exhibit aromas and flavors reminiscent of herbs or herb-like characteristics. These can herbs such as mint, vegetables such as asparagus, freshly cut grass or tomato leaves. These aromas are generated by a component in white and red grapes, called pyrazine.

  1. Aromatic Profile: Herbaceous wines often showcase aromas reminiscent of fresh herbs, green foliage, or even vegetal notes. Common herbal aromas can include mint, basil, eucalyptus, green bell pepper, and grass.

  2. Flavor Profile: The herbaceous characteristics can extend to the palate, with flavors that evoke the freshness of herbs or green plants. These flavors can be subtle or more pronounced, depending on the grape variety and winemaking practices.

  3. Light to Medium-bodied: Herbaceous wines are often light to medium-bodied, with a refreshing and sometimes crisp mouthfeel. The emphasis is on expressing the herbal nuances without excessive weight.

  4. Common Varieties: Certain grape varieties are more prone to exhibiting herbaceous characteristics. For example, Sauvignon Blanc is known for its grassy and green notes, and Cabernet Sauvignon can display green bell pepper aromas.

  5. Cool Climate Influence: Herbaceous qualities are often associated with grapes grown in cooler climates. Cool climates can preserve the natural acidity of the grapes and contribute to the development of herbal aromas.

Examples of grape varieties and wines known for their herbaceous characteristics include:

  • Sauvignon Blanc: Sauvignon Blanc wines, especially those from regions like Marlborough in New Zealand or the Loire Valley in France, are renowned for their herbaceous profile, featuring notes of grass, green bell pepper, and sometimes catnip.

  • Cabernet Sauvignon: Cabernet Sauvignon wines, particularly those from cooler regions, can exhibit green or herbaceous notes, such as green bell pepper or eucalyptus.

  • Cabernet Franc: Cabernet Franc wines are known for their herbaceous qualities, including green and herbal notes alongside red fruit characteristics.

  • Merlot (in certain styles): Merlot wines, especially those grown in cooler climates or with minimal oak influence, can display herbaceous characteristics.

  • Grüner Veltliner: Grüner Veltliner wines, a white grape variety from Austria, can display herbal and white pepper notes, contributing to their distinctive profile.

  • Verdejo: Verdejo wines from Spain may exhibit herbal characteristics, such as notes of fennel or anise

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