Wine aromas

The aromas follow the chronology of the evolution of the wine, so we find the primary, secondary and tertiary aromas.

The primary aromas of the wine are the characteristics of the grape variety and the terroir. Each grape variety has its peculiarities and each soil its unique composition producing their own aromas.

Primary aromas can be identified by families 

Floral : rose, hawthorn, jasmine, violet, lavender, iris, hyacinth.

Fruity for white wines : grapefruit, lemon, tangerine, pear, apple, peach, melon, pineapple, lychee.

Fruity for red wines : blackcurrant, strawberry, blackberry, cherry, plum, currant.

Vegetal : pepper, mint, thyme, eucalyptus, cut grass.

Mineral : flint, clay, copper, limestone.

Secondary aromas

They are commonly referred to as fermentation aromas. They follow the primary aromas and develop during the fermentation period.

Fermentaries : yeasts, bread, bakery, brioche.

Lactics : Milk, butter, caramel.

Fruity : Apricot, pineapple, banana, walnut, hazelnut.

Vegetable : dead leaves, damp earth, boxwood, hay, humus.

Spicy : Cinnamon, bay leaf, licorice, nutmeg, cloves.

The tertiary aromas

These ones come from aging, the result of the evolution and aging of the wine in the bottle and in oak barrels. You probably understand that these are the characteristics of older wines.

The oak brings notes of wood, vanilla and balsamic in addition to the empyreumatic aromas of roasting, toast, toast, caramel, coffee, chocolate and mocha. Obviously you’ll taste the notes of oak, pine and resin.

For a young wine, the floral notes will normally change into ones of dried flowers. The fresh fruit aromas into dried and cooked fruits, prunes, coconut, and even jam.

Vegetal notes such as fern, mint, hay, mushroom, tobacco, tea, humus, truffle, slowly appear.

Spicy notes are accentuated like cloves, anise, liquorice and cinnamon.

Aromas of leather, meat and game meat emerge at the tip of the nose.

White wines will develop aromas of dried fruits and honey.

If you want to prepare for a wine tasting, you can read our article about it. –

Few people have the ability to identify all the aromas in a wine, but you can have fun discovering them on your own or with friends. There are few wrong answers but this exercise requires a little humility. On the other hand, you will learn more about your taste, especially your preferences between young or older wines and between white, rosé or red wines. Do not be afraid of making mistakes, try different wines, you will find wonders.


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