Glossary: E - F


The term for “sweet” in Hungary, often used to denote sweet wines from Tokaji, as well as a few other regions.


A French viticulture term for destemming. This is the process of removing the stems from the grape bunches before the pressing for the juice happens. If too many stems are left in the pressing stage, an unwanted bitterness can find its way into the wine.


A term found on wine labels in Germany and Austria. This style of wine is produced when the grapes are left to freeze on the vines well after the original harvest date, in an effort to concentrate the sugar and make a naturally sweet wine.   


Élevage (France)
A term that translates into “brining up” in French, denoting the resting and ageing process that the wine goes through before it is sold to the public. This can refer to the wine in barrel in the winery cellar, or the bottled product resting in the bottle cellar.



A subregion in Bordeaux, known for its moderately priced (and moderate quality) white wines. The region sits between the Garonne and Dordogne rivers, surrounded by some of the most storied chateau in France.



Legal term for “Estate Bottled” and will be seen on wine labels in Germany of those producers who grow and produce the wine on the premises. Related wine label terms include abfüllung and gutsabfüllung.


This term refers to Madeira (Portugal) that has been aged in a hot house or a room with stoves, meant to intentionally impart caramelized flavors and textures in the wine. Madeira has a history of creative wine production techniques, as the wines, historically, were sold to ships passing through the Atlantic and needed to hold up to long ship voyages.  


A wine tasting and/or production term. This refers to the solid matter that is present in the finished wine.


The scientific process by which sugar is turned into alcohol by way of yeast interaction. Yeast is everywhere and crushed grapes, or grape juice, is destined for wine (or vinegar on a long enough timeline) as soon as the grape juice meets the yeast. Anything fruit with sugar can be turned into an alcoholic beverage, but only fine wine grapes give the consistency and quality to warrant an industry being formed around them.      


The removal of solid matter inside of wine, usually right before bottling. Sometimes known as "fining".


A term used in wine tasting. It describes the complexity of the wine by the way it lingers on the palate after drinking.  


A wine term in Spain, specifically Jerez and the surrounding areas. It refers to a dry, light style of sherry that has a salty flavor due to the proximity to the ocean. It is aged under a layer of yeast cells, called a 'flor', which helps it retain its freshness. See Sherry.


First growths  
The top tier of the 1855 classification for the left bank of Bordeaux. The five elite properties of the Medoc and Graves regions of Bordeaux: Latour, Lafite, Haut-Brion, Mouton-Rothschild and Margaux, which were picked out as 'Premier Cru Classé' in the 1855 Bordeaux Classification (Mouton Rothschild was promoted from a second growth in the 1973).


A wine tasting term. It is used to describe a wine that has a less than desirable structural makeup and is usually low on acidity and balance.  


Flying winemakers  
A term that originated in Australia. It refers to winemakers who produce wines in different hemispheres, ostensibly executing two harvests a year.   



A wine from Alicate, Spain. It is known for its high alcohol and oxidized aromas and flavors.


A winemaking process by which high proof alcohol is infused into the fermenting wine in order to arrest the fermentation and protect or “fortify” the wine, once necessary for the long sea voyages that alcoholic beverages underwent. It is more for the continuity of style in modern times, with Jerez, Madeira and Oporto leading the most popular interpretations of the day.


Free-run juice
A winemaking term for the juice that runs off of the first pressing of wine grapes. This juice is prized, without any of the astringency of the subsequent pressings of the harvested grapes.  


French hybrid grapes
Refers to the grape varieties produced in France that are the result of crossing the classic European varieties with American species of vines. These hybrids have much of the hardiness and disease resistance of the American vines but the wine quality generally isn't great.


French paradox
Also known as the European Paradox. It refers to the seemingly high fat, high cholesterol diets of the French yet low levels of obesity and cardiovascular diseases. It most likely fails to adequately recognize the low level of additives and hormones that European Union countries generally use for their food products.  


A wine tasting term that describes a wine that has more aromas and flavor of fruit (cherry, raspberry, blueberry) than non-fruit (cinnamon, leather, flowers). Generally, wine that hails from warmer climates will have more fruit-forward qualities than those from cooler areas. For example, Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley grows in a warmer microclimate than Bordeaux, France. The resulting wine is usually drier with more non-fruit qualities from Bordeaux with the Napa Valley example having more body, more alcohol and of course, ore fruit.