sugar content of wine

by Paul Drake
(Crescent Head NSW)

Paul Asks:

Is there a ready reckoner for sugar content, so that the buyer knows if it is sweet or dry?

What is sugar content of the chambourcin variety amongst others?

Darby Answers
Unfortunately there is no simple way for a wine consumer to know if a wine is sweet or dry until he or she tastes it. This the downside of varietal labeling as practiced in the New World.

There are moves to include a standard indicator on the label for some wines, eg Riesling.

As a general rule red wines are dry unless clearly marked otherwise. Whites tend to be less well defined, late picked or late harvest often means sweet.

Chambourcin wines are generally dry, but as they are grown in warmer climates some can have a touch of residual sugar.

Comments for sugar content of wine

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Dec 01, 2009
Sugar in wine
by: Duncan Harris

Sugar in wine is a lovely thing.

Humans tend to addicted to sugar, salt and fat.

Grape juice concentrate is an allowable ingredient in Australian wines. Cane Sugar is not allowed unless it is used in sparkling wines.

Most commercial dry white wines have about 5 grammes per litre(g/l), and dry red wines about 2-5 grammes/litre. More popular off dry whites have 15-25 g/l.

At Harris Organic Wines we do not add grape juice concentrate as there is no certified ORGANIC G.J.C available in Australia.

Some wineries do not use G.J.C. as they store refrigerated grape juice/partially fermented wine until needed to add to the tank prior to bottling.

What's in your wine?

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