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does time dissipate heat in a wine - dependably?
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I had an '03 Argyle Nuthouse tonight. I had noted on previous notes on the wine (up through 2009) that it was marred a little bit by being hot. Neither on the note I made in '10 or tonight did I record any heat from the wine. Does time in bottle dependably dissipate a heat sensation?


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Posts: 3462 | Location: NW Suburbs of Chicago | Registered: Aug 16, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Not really. You have it right tho - it's not the heat itself so much as your own sensation. I think what happens is that you notice it more or less, depending on your mood, what you're doing at the time, whatever else, if anything, you're drinking or eating, the aging of the wine, etc.

Vintage matters too. Not so much in the absolute alc level as in how the rest of the wine will affect your perception of the heat. I.e., if there's more fruit, sugar, acid, whatever, even at a constant level of alcohol, you will perceive it differently.


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Posts: 2590 | Location: NY | Registered: Dec 09, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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aphilla, is it possible the bottles were served at different temperatures? I've found that even a few degrees increase in serving temp can make normally good wine become less enjoyable because of the increased perception of 'heat'.
 
Posts: 2733 | Location: Toronto | Registered: Nov 30, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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temps help

too cold and you hide the spirits, too warm and the spirits show up.

I can say after drinking alot of port, I can tell you that time in bottle certainly does nothing to the alcohol.

I will also add that residual sugars will add volatile acidity in the flavors.

What I do when a port is spirity is open air decant followed iwth a few swirls in the decanter. Usually does the trick


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Posts: 11857 | Location: NYC | Registered: Feb 16, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I am confused. Confused Ain't this part of the aging process? we let wines age a bit so that the wine gains balance; meaning the alcohol integrates and the perception of heat dimishes? Of course not all alcohol will integrate so a 16.5% ABV will probably be difficult if not impossible to be balanced but for an Oregon Pinot, wouldn't time help?


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Posts: 1547 | Location: DC Suburbs, Potomac MD. | Registered: Dec 12, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Merengue:
I am confused. Confused Ain't this part of the aging process? we let wines age a bit so that the wine gains balance; meaning the alcohol integrates and the perception of heat dimishes? Of course not all alcohol will integrate so a 16.5% ABV will probably be difficult if not impossible to be balanced but for an Oregon Pinot, wouldn't time help?


I personally have never cared for alcohol integration.

it's either got alot or a little. I think it's a negligible amount of alcohol that decomposes with age, mostly it's the various acids and phenols that either clump/fall away/settle somewhere else that I feel aging attributes too.

The vanillan in the oak is one that I wait for age to "integrate"


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Posts: 11857 | Location: NYC | Registered: Feb 16, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by GregT:
Not really. You have it right tho - it's not the heat itself so much as your own sensation. I think what happens is that you notice it more or less, depending on your mood, what you're doing at the time, whatever else, if anything, you're drinking or eating, the aging of the wine, etc.



Hmmm. Interesting concept. And I can't say that you are wrong on this. But I don't ever recall having a wine that tasted hotter when it was older.

I don't buy a lot of pinots, so I haven't had many multiple bottles to drink over time, and I also tend to avoid "hot" wines in the first place. BUT, I have noticed what aphilla is talking about with some, but not all Martinelli pinots--that wines which were hot in their youth seemed more in balance with age. Now I'm not sure if this is due to GregT's theory, or that the wines actually integrated the alcohol better.


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Posts: 3053 | Location: Saginaw, MI | Registered: Mar 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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we let wines age a bit so that the wine gains balance; meaning the alcohol integrates and the perception of heat dimishes?


Merengue - this isn't what happens with age. I guess this goes to Redhawk's post above too, but alcohol doesn't "integrate". When we say integrate, that's an inexact term of course - molecules change, oxidize, polymerize, unpolymerize, etc., and a whole lot of things happen that change the flavors we pick up. We call it "integration" sometimes, but it's just a number of chemical reactions over time.

Alcohol stays alcohol. It doesn't really blend with something else to form a new compound.

I should have mentioned temp above - it's one of the most important factors in picking up alcohol. It's one reason I hate when people serve wine that's at the ambient temperature of the room. Cool it down a few degrees and it will be much better.


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Posts: 2590 | Location: NY | Registered: Dec 09, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks GregT. Agreed alcohol level won't change since there isn't any evaporation nor dilution etc. So u are right integrate is not the right word. But do we agree that a wine will feel less hot as it evolves/ages and it gets more balanced? Of course not all wines but good ageworthy wines i suppose?


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Posts: 1547 | Location: DC Suburbs, Potomac MD. | Registered: Dec 12, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Oak and tannins may integrate/become less overtly noticeable as a wine ages. But a poorly balanced wine rarely gains balance with age.


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Posts: 39 | Location: Maryland | Registered: Dec 02, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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But do we agree that a wine will feel less hot as it evolves/ages and it gets more balanced?

Not really, for the reason DBG mentions above. It's the one factor that doesn't really improve with age. As a wine ages, it typically gets more subtle. Say you have big sweet fruit to start, as the wine ages, the primary fruit flavors start to attenuate, they turn into something else. A young Rioja for example, has a lot of cherry to it as well as lots of tannins and maybe obvious oak. With age, the cherry fruit fades and you get notes of tea, dried strawberries, leather, etc., and the wood changes and you end up with notes of straw and vanilla. It becomes a completely different wine.

Of course all those things affect your perception of everything else. But generally, alcohol is kind of harsh and if the wine is harsh to start, it's going to stay that way. A great example is vintage Port. You keep those 30 or 40 years and they still taste alcoholic.

Tawnys are a good example too, and Madeira even better. I'm going to be drinking some tonight that goes back quite a ways. Everything that can happen to a wine happens to Madeira - age, oxidation, heat, etc. All those things have a profound effect on the wine. And the wines are mostly going to be older than I am. But the alcohol is still there and noticeable as ever. It's the one constant.


"The best part is how he said the ENGLISH language. Fine irony. Use American next time."
 
Posts: 2590 | Location: NY | Registered: Dec 09, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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