AROMA - The scent of a wine. Young wines have aroma. Balanced wine will posses these components in proportion to one another.
BOUQUET - The complex aromas that develop with age.
BRUT - A term for dry Champagne or sparkling wine.
BUTTERY - Descriptor for rich flavor and smoothness of texture. Often referred to oak-aged white wines; many Chardonnay, white Burgundies.
CASSIS - A black currant flavor common in Cabernet Sauvignon.
CHALKY - Describes an extremely dry finish.
CRISP - Describes clean acid on the finish of a white wine.
EARTHY - This describes a mineral character that can add interest to the palate.
FINISH - Final impression the wine leaves.
FRUITY - Apple, black currant, cherry, citrus, pear, peach, raspberry, strawberry; describes a wine in which the fruit is dominant.
FULL-BODIED - Full proportion of flavor and alcohol; big, fat.
GRASSY - The aroma of hay or cut grass, not unpleasant unless exaggerated. Usually found in Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc.
HONEYED - Smell or taste reminiscent of honey, characteristic of late-harvest wines affected by "noble rot."
LEGS - The viscous rivulets that runs down the side of the glass after swirling or sipping.
NOSE - The smell of the wine; a "good nose" is pleasant and inviting, an "off nose" is somewhat offensive.
OAK - Aroma and flavor derived from aging wine in Oak casks or barrels. Oak is characterized by; smokiness, vanilla, clove and other spices.
OXIDIZED - Wine that has spoiled, from over-exposure to air.
PUNGENT - Wine with a distinctly strong nose.
PEPPER - A component in either the nose or the palate, that smells or tastes of bell or cracked pepper.
SMOKY - Tobacco aroma or flavor that is associated with Oak aging.
SOMMELIER - French for wine steward; a manager in a restaurant who has charge of wines and their service.
SPICY - Wines that posses the distinct aroma or character of spice; clove, mint, cinnamon or pepper.
SULPHUR - An antioxidant used in making most wines. Fermentation produces minimal amounts of sulfur.
TANNIN - The skins, seeds and stems of grapes will naturally produce tannins. This is a predominant feature in red wine. Tannic wines produce a puckering or drying-out of your tongue. Tannin will mellow with age.
VANILLA - The aroma and/or taste of vanilla beans imparted by Oak aging.
VARIETAL - Refers to the distinguishing features of each grape variety.
VELVETY - Smooth and rich texture.
WOODY - Excessive aroma of wood, common in wines over-aged in casks or barrels.