Piedmont Wine Lexicon - V


DOC designation of origin for wines from the northern Italian region of Veneto. The red wine varieties Corvina, Rondinella, Molinara, Rossignola, Negrara, Barbera and Sangiovese are cultivated on almost 5000 hectares of vineyards in the hinterland of the city of Verona, whereby Corvina can provide up to 70% of the blend. Valpolicella is traditionally a rather light wine to be drunk young with pleasant cherry aromas and a harmonious structure. It was not until the 1990s that a denser, more intense and more solidly structured type of wine became established, which is marketed in particular under the additional name of Superiore. These wines are often pressed using the so-called ripasso method. The most famous type of wine in the Valpolicella region is the Amarone. Sweet Recioto is also produced.


independent designation of origin of the A.C. Côtes-du-Rhone-Villages in the municipality of the same name in the Vaucluse department in southern France. White, rosè and red wines come from the typical grape varieties from the approximately 270 hectares of vineyards. Red wines and roses must be made from Grenache at least 50%.


DOC designation of origin for wines from the valley of the same name in the northern Italian region of Lombardy. The red wine variety Chiavennasca (Nebbiolo) is cultivated on a little more than 600 hectares of vineyards, as well as Merlot, Rossola, Pignola, Valtellinese and Brugnola. Under the name Sforzato (Sfursàt), a dry straw wine in the style of Amarone is produced, which must have an alcohol content of at least 14% vol.

Vanilla flavor, actually vanilla flavor

a kind of wood taste, which is mainly caused by the aging in barriques. The underlying substance is vanillin, chemically vanilla aldehyde, an aromatic aldehyde that is bound to sugar in the essential oils of numerous plants. It is released by heating the wooden staves during barrel construction and then leached out of the wood by the alcohol in the wine.

Vegetable, vegetable

scented of vegetables, grass or leaves; Term used in wine language for aromas that are reminiscent of vegetable green, in contrast to floral or fruit aromas. Vegetable aromas can stand out pleasantly in the context of a complex bouquet; On their own, they usually appear coarse or even flawed. Dominant vegetal notes are often due to the processing of not fully ripe grapes.

Vendemmia Tardiva

Italian for late harvest, also for wine made from late harvest, fully ripe grapes; the designation is not provided for by the Italian wine law, but is occasionally used for semi-sweet or sweet, late harvest-like wines.


White wine grape variety from the Spanish region of Castile and León, which is mainly cultivated in the Rueda growing region. The wines develop a scent of gooseberries and apples, but can also show a pronounced vegetable or mineral character.


a chemical reaction in which acids react with alcohols to form esters and water.


White wine grape variety from the central and western Mediterranean region; it is cultivated on almost 3900 hectares of vineyards in Italy, especially in the coastal landscapes of the Tyrrhenian Sea and on the island of Sardinia, on the French island of Corsica and on the French Mediterranean coast. It is believed that Vermentino is of Spanish origin and belongs to the Malvasia group. The late-ripening variety produces pleasantly fruity, juicy white wines. The only Vermentino-based DOCG wine is Vermentino di Gallura.

Vernaccia di San Gimignano

DOCG designation of origin for white wines from the Italian Tuscany Vernaccia is an Italian white wine grape variety that is mainly cultivated in the area of ​​the Tuscan city of San Gimignano. Vernaccia di San Gimignano was the first Italian DOC wine in 1966 and was one of the first to receive DOCG status in 1987. The wines are delicately fruity with a light spice in the fragrance, juicy and firm on the palate; better qualities are occasionally vinified or expanded in barriques.

trickling, trickling through

shedding flowers or young berries between the first blossoming and the final development of the berries; In principle, this shedding is a natural process within the vegetation cycle of the vine and its fruit development - however, if too many flowers are shed, this affects the yield. The grape varieties Riesling, Gewürztraminer and Pinot Noir, the Austrian Neuburger, the Italian Picolit, and the red wine grape variety Sankt Laurent are particularly prone to trickling. In addition to such variety-specific characteristics, the reasons for the trickling can also be a disturbed fertilization as a result of too low temperatures or insufficient supply of the vine with the nutrient boron.


A blend wine (also known as a cuvée) is a wine that has been composed of several grape varieties in order to combine the positive properties of the individual grape varieties and to create a multi-layered wine. An example would be a blending wine in order to benefit equally from the scent of the Traminer and the acidity of the Riesling. Due to the blending, of course, the uniqueness of certain grape varieties is lost, which is why the blended wine has both advantages and disadvantages.


Red wine grape variety from the north of the Italian region of Piedmont; the late-ripening variety is cultivated on almost 180 hectares (1999) of vineyards and goes into the production of the DOC or. DOCG wines Boca, Bramaterra and Ghemme. In the Oltrepò Pavese area, Vespolina is also known under the name Ughetta.

Multilayered, complex

showing numerous aromas; Term of the wine language for high-quality wines with a rich spectrum of fragrances and great elegance. Complex wines do not have to be strong or heavy, as is often assumed.

Vin de Paille

French for straw wine. Specialty of the French wine-growing region Jura; however, the grapes rarely dry on straw, but mostly in small wooden boxes or on wooden slats. The wines are made from red or white grape varieties such as Pinot Noir, Chardonnay or Savagnin and ferment for up to 24 months. They are then aged in wooden barrels for several months and marketed under the Denomination of Origin L'Ètoile or Arbois.


Process grapes or musts into wine; the term generally encompasses the totality of the work steps in winemaking from receiving the grapes to bottling the finished wine; but it can also only refer to the stage from fermentation to acid degradation.

Vin Jaune

Wine specialty of the French wine-growing region Jura, which is pressed from overripe grapes of the Chardonnay and Savagnin varieties; it matures in barriques for at least six years, which are not topped up during this time. The wine comes into extensive contact with atmospheric oxygen, but at certain times of the year a layer of pile forms on its surface, which protects it from too rapid oxidation. The wines, which are marketed under the designations of origin Arbois and Château-Chalon, are characterized by their dense, yellow color and their particular aroma, reminiscent of dry nuts, spices and honey.

Vin Doux Naturel

French, natural sweet wine, abbreviated V.D.N., fortified and therefore sweet liqueur wine made from the fully ripe grapes before fermentation ends; the name is mostly used in the south of France. Such Vins Doux Naturell are marketed under the designation of origin Banyuls, Muscat, de Beaumes-de-Venise, Rasteau, Rivesaltes.

Vin Santo

Italian holy wine; Straw wine from the Italian regions of Tuscany and Trentino-South Tyrol; it is made from mostly white grapes that are left to dry for several weeks or months after the harvest, lying on wooden slats or hanging from scaffolding. After fermentation, during which a certain residual sugar content remains unfermented, the young wine is matured in small, only half-full and hermetically sealed barrels. These are stored for at least two years in the so-called vinsantaia, usually in an attic, where they are exposed to both summer heat and winter cold. In summer, the residual sugar begins to ferment again spontaneously year after year under the influence of yeast from the barrel. The result of this procedure are alcohol-based wines with more or less pronounced sweetness and aromas of nuts, apricots, honey and spices. Vin santo is marketed under a number of independent DOC designations of origin. Vin santo del Chianti, Vin santo del Chianti classico or Vin santo del Chianti di Montepulciano. Vin santo is also produced from red grape varieties under the additional name Occhio di pernice.

Vinho Verde,

DOC designation of origin for wines from northern Portugal; Their cultivation area is the largest in the country and covers a good 34,000 hectares of vineyards. The Vinho Verde area is divided into six areas: Amarante, Basto, Braga, Lima, Moncao and Penafiel. The climate is humid, which leads to the lush vegetation that inspired the name of the Denomination of Origin; Grapes of various qualities grow on the barren, sandy granite soil. The white Alvarinho, Avesso, Azal, Loureiro, and Trajadura as well as the red Azal tinto, Brancelho, Espadeiro, Pedral and Vinhao are cultivated. Most of the wines have barely more than 8.5% alcohol by volume and appear extremely light, often also slightly sparkling; the sparkling red vinho is considered the lightest red wine in the world. The only powerful type of wine in the appellation comes from the area around the city of Moncao and is made from the white wine grape variety Alvarinho.


liquid or. Tenacity of wines; it depends on the alcohol content - in particular on the higher alcohol content such as glycerine -, on the sugar and on the extract content of the wine: the higher these values, the more viscous the wine. Especially with sweet wines, increased viscosity, which is expressed in pronounced tears (church window), is an indication of a high sugar content. If it exceeds a certain level, especially with dry wines, it is considered a wine disease. They then say the wine is mild.


Abbreviation for Vinum Optimum Rare Signature or Very Old Rare Sherry, a quality grade of sherry.


Abbreviation for Vinum Optimum Signatum or Very Old Sherry, a quality grade of sherry.


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