The Most Common Questions Asked About Wine


At World Wine Services, we understand that there is an art to not only making the best wine but also enjoying it. The complexity of wines' flavour profiles and the variety of options available means that drinking wine can be intimidating to newcomers. That's why we've put together this simple blog to answer the most common questions about wine.

Do All Wines Get Better With Age?

The idea that all wines get better with time is a very common misconception. The ageing process can significantly alter wine, revealing more complex flavours that were previously hidden by bolder, more primary flavours. Ageing wine can also have an effect on its colour and texture. However, not all wines benefit from being aged. In fact, experts say more wine is consumed over-aged than under. Experts also estimate that only 5-10% of wines benefit from ageing beyond a year, and only 1% get benefit from being aged 5-10 years.

Does the quality of the wine glass make a difference?

The type and/or quality of the wine glass you use can make a difference to the way you experience the wine, but it’s unlikely to impact the taste. Confused? Let us explain. Because the sense of smell is such a big part of how people experience wine, the type of glass used can affect that experience based on its structure. For example, many believe that red wines are better suited to wine glasses with large bowls and wide rims: this allows the holder to swish the wine without spilling, and the wide rim allows for the oxidation of the wine which strengthens the wine’s bouquet of scents. Alternatively, a tapered/narrow rimmed glass is better suited to white wine, to help trap the aromas. While there are some theories relating to the structure of the glass and how it affects the exact position on your tongue that the wine gets to first, this has been largely disregarded by scientists.

How long does wine last after being opened?

The answer to this question will vary depending on which type of bottle you’ve opened. Lighter white wines can last between 5 and 7 days in the fridge, whereas a full-bodied white wine will only last 3-5 days in the fridge. Lighter reds last 2-3 days in the fridge, medium reds can last 3-3 days, and a full-bodied red can last between 4 and 6 days in the fridge. Sparkling wines can last between 1-3 days, once opened, the bubbles will begin to lose carbonation. Fortified wines such as Sherry and Port are able to survive in the fridge for up to 28 days thanks to the presence of Brandy.

What are legs?

If you’re a wine enthusiast, you may be familiar with the term “legs”, or “wine legs”. To put it simply, “legs” refer to “the droplets of wine that form on the inside of a wine glass” when testing a wine’s alcohol levels. It’s a scientific method to do with the surface tension and the evaporation of alcohol. To test a wine’s legs, you should hold the glass at an angle to let the wine flow up one side of the glass, then hold it upright again, and check the density of the streaks of wine (“legs”) that form. A lot of legs indicates a higher alcohol percentage.

Why do people slurp wine?

If you haven’t seen anyone slurp wine in real life, you may think it’s just an exaggeration that you see on TV and in the movies. However, it’s a very real technique used by wine-tasting professionals. The reason people slurp their wine is to add more oxygen to it, which will in turn awaken new aromas and flavours of the wine.

Should I decant wine before I drink it?

Decanting wine is done for two reasons. Firstly, it helps separate any sediment from the wine, which can impact the aftertaste and colour of the wine if not removed, and it helps to introduce oxygen to the wine which in turn opens up the aromas and unlocks hidden flavours. The wines that mostly benefit from being decanted are typically high-end, quality wines that benefit from ageing as well. So, if you have a special bottle, like a Bordeaux or Barolo, it’s worth decanting them.

At what temperature should wine be served?

While it largely depends on the type of wine being served, general guidance for the serving temperature of red wine is slightly below room temperature (approx. 15-20 degrees celsius). For white wine, general guidelines state that the optimum serving temperature is slightly warmer than a fridge (between 7-12 degrees celsius).

Which Country produces the best wine?

If your first guess was France, you’d be right! France makes up 29.5% of global wine exports and it also has the most vineyards and the highest rated wine, at an average rating of 82. However, as with many factors pertaining to wine, it all depends on your personal taste.

Is wine vegan?

It’s entirely understandable to assume that wine is vegan because it’s made from grapes, however, this is not always the case. When wine is created, it’s filtered through products known as fining agents. This process is designed to remove protein, yeast, cloudiness, bad flavours and other unwanted bodies from the wine. Many common fining agents are animal byproducts, such as blood and bone marrow, fish oil, gelatin, casein (milk protein) and more. Luckily, there are also many non-animal products that can be used as fining agents such as limestone, kaolin clay, and carbon. These fining agents are used to create vegan wines that are available to order via World Wine Services.

What are tannins?

Tannins are “naturally occurring compounds that exist inside grape skins, seeds and stems”. Due to their presence in grape skins and seeds, red wines tend to have more tannins than white wines because red wines are left to absorb the colour from the skin for longer.


At World Wine Services, we are not only wine experts but we can also offer you a selected range of premium wines. Visit our online catalogue to discover our range of stock.

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