Unveiling the Mysteries of Orange Wine: A Beginner’s Guide

Wine is a fascinating drink that has been enjoyed by people worldwide for thousands of years. However, not many people are familiar with the concept of orange wine. This unique type of wine is gaining popularity among wine lovers.

In this article, we will delve into the mysteries of orange wine and provide a beginner’s guide to this intriguing drink.

What Is Orange Wine?

Orange wine is a type of wine made from white grapes that have been fermented with their skins. This process gives the wine an orange or amber colour, hence the name “orange wine”. Orange wine is also known as skin-contact wine or macerated wine.

The process of making orange wine is similar to that of red wine. During the fermentation process, the grape juice is left in contact with the skins and seeds of the grapes for an extended period. This allows the wine to take on the tannins and flavours present in the skins, resulting in a full-bodied wine with a unique taste.

Tasting Notes

Orange wine has a distinct taste that sets it apart from other types of wine. It is often described as having an earthy, nutty or savoury flavour, with hints of dried fruit and spice. The tannins in orange wine give it a slight bitterness, and the acidity provides a crisp finish.

Orange wine is versatile and pairs well with a range of foods. It is particularly suitable for pairing with rich and fatty foods, such as roasted meats, cheese and charcuterie.

How to Serve Orange Wine

Orange wine should be served slightly cooler than most white wines. It is best served at around 12-14°C, which is slightly warmer than the typical 8-10°C for white wine. This will allow the wine to open up and release its full aroma and flavour.

Orange wine is best served in a large glass with a wide bowl, similar to a red wine glass. This will allow the wine to breathe and the aromas to develop fully.

Orange Wine Production

Orange wine is produced in a similar way to red wine. After the grapes have been harvested, they are crushed to release the juice. The juice is then left in contact with the skins and seeds for several days or even weeks, depending on the desired taste and colour.

The wine will ferment naturally during this time, with the yeast converting the grape sugar into alcohol. The skins and seeds will also release tannins and flavour compounds into the juice, giving the wine its characteristic taste and colour.

Once the fermentation is complete, the wine is transferred to barrels or tanks to age. Depending on the desired taste and style, orange wine can be aged for several months or even years.
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