A body of a wine is the feel of the wine in your mouth.
It is how full-bodied or light-bodied the wine is.
The body of a wine is determined by the alcohol and sugar content in the wine. In general, the higher the alcohol and sugar content, the fuller-bodied the wine will be.
When we talk about full-bodied wine, we’re referring to wines that have a higher alcohol content and are richer in flavor.
These wines tend to be made from grapes that have a higher sugar content, which results in more alcohol during the fermentation process.
Full-bodied wines are typically bolder and more robust than their lighter counterparts.
They often have intense fruit flavors and aromas, as well as pronounced tannins (the compounds that give the wine its astringent quality).
Due to their high alcohol content, full-bodied wines can be a bit overwhelming for some drinkers.
They’re best enjoyed by those who appreciate bold flavors and aren’t afraid of a little bit of a punch.
Some popular examples of Full-bodied wines –
- Cabernet Sauvignon
- Bordeaux Blend
- Petite Sirah
Light Bodied wine
Light-bodied wines are typically lower in alcohol and tannins and have less body or mouthfeel.
They can be enjoyed on their own or with food and are often more refreshing than full-bodied wines.
Some common light-bodied wines are –
- Pinot Noir
- Sauvignon Blanc
- Pinot Grigio
Some experts also have an additional body type – medium-bodied wine.
A wine is considered medium-bodied if it has an alcohol content between 12% and 14%.
This type of wine is typically lighter in color and has less tannins than a full-bodied wine.
Medium-bodied wines are typically more fruit-forward and easy to drink. Common varietals that fall into this category include Grenache, Sangiovese, etc.
Here is a great video to help you understand more about wine body –
Why Understanding Wine Body is Important
It is important to know about the “wine body” while buying wine because it can help you to choose a wine that will be appropriate for the meal or occasion.
"Body" is one of the key traits which help define a wine. Others are - sweetness, acidity, tannins, and alcohol %.
Some benefits of knowing the “wine body” while buying a wine include being able to make a more informed decision about which wine to purchase, and also being able to better understand how a particular wine will taste.
Additionally, understanding the “wine body” can help to ensure that you are getting the most bang for your buck when it comes to purchasing wine.