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Grading sweetness of red wines


Does anyone else feel that it’s time for red wines to be given a sweetness rating in the way that whites traditionally are? I don’t mean dessert red wines or ports, but ‘normal’ reds. The variation is now quite extreme between (shall we say) certain traditional clarets and older French regionals at the very dry end, and many a New World or “modern” old world red. Some of these can be startlingly sweet, to my taste offputtingly so. Generally there is a trend for red wines to become ever sweeter. Yet there is not yet any indication in the buying notes about this. Views?


I also think residual sugar should prominently feature on labels


There would also be a difference between wines that have residual sugar vs those that are perceived to be sweeter due to sweet fruit flavours - its partly how the wine has been made, the new world wines are probably more likely to use stainless steel which means the wine tastes fresher and retains more of the fruit character.


Residual sugar score…I’d vote for that…approximately 20 years ago I tried to do a comparison between French reds and New World reds"…I contacted several producers in Australia and Chile to no avail. Most of the French winemakers had fiches techniques embedded in their websites, so I was able to find the information quite easily.


I recently enjoyed this. It was interesting, but seemed sweet (I assume due to the ‘raisining’ effect of its production method) and probably too sweet for certain foods, though maybe it was just my perception.


It’s probably a French thing, relying on the fact that everyone is expected to know. In some countries, in contrast, there are notions of ‘sweet half dry red’, ‘sweet’, ‘sweet fortified’ etc printed on the bottles below the brand name as part of essential consumer information.


Popped round to see the folks this evening - me Ma kindly got some wine out for me and poured a generous glass: Yellow Tail Malbec. Crikey. Now don’t get me wrong, different strokes for different folks and all that, but good lord, I once had a Maury with less sugar in it, I swear.

Dad doesn’t drink wine any more, so my mum insisted that I take the rest of the bottle home.

Wine Wednesday [28 March 2018]

I’m sure you could find a nice recipe to of load the Malbec in…:rofl::rofl::rofl: @Herbster


A fruitcake, maybe…? Could soak the raisins in it or something. No need to add sugar :no_mouth:

Or I could find a pairing for it - reckon it’d hold its own against a chocolate mousse or something :japanese_ogre:


Or freeze it in ice cubes…for a sangria??


Now that’s not a bad idea! Something for the patio now the weather’s turning…!

Gotta do something with it…


Make a good old English trifle…soak the sponge fingers in the offending red !! Please let me know if it is edible :innocent::rose::wine_glass:


I’d find a residual sugar level indication on the back label helpful. The real problem though is as @M1tch pointed out, that’s only one aspect of perceived sweetness. Just to take an example - the Society’s Exhibition Argentinian Malbec is an excellent wine, but I find its inherent sweetness problematic with some foods. I doubt that most of that is due to RS level.

Still, it would be helpful in sorting out the Apothics and yellow tail types of wine.