Wine Tasting Terms


Has been used interchangeably with ‘oaky’ where, in moderation, is de­sirable in some wines. Can also imply other non-oak wood qualities derived from defective barrel ageing, and would be considered to be faults in the wine.

Volatile Acidity

A vinegary quality in a wine, due to the presence of acetic acid along with ethyl acetate in the wine.


The presence of acetic acid in wine, detected by odor and taste. A def­inite fault.


The feel of a wine when it is thick, soft, and smooth on the palate.


Taste and smell sensations of a vegetable nature. They add to the over­all complexity of a wine in small amounts, but undesirable when exces­sive.


A heavy taste feeling of body to a wine, akin to oily.


A cloudiness in a wine due to suspended sediment. Brilliant is the term used for a wine with no suspended solid material.


A wine that shows significant oxidation due to age.