Wine 101 Guide
CHAPTER 1 What Really is Wine?
CHAPTER 2 The 9 Styles of Wine
CHAPTER 3 Top 10 Types of Wine
CHAPTER 4 How to Taste Wine
CHAPTER 5 Wine Serving & Storing Tips
CHAPTER 6 Food and Wine Pairing Basics
CHAPTER 7 Wine Regions of the World
CHAPTER 9 Going Deeper: Climate & Soils
Wine is an alcoholic beverage made with
Of course, you can ferment any fruit to make
wine. But legally speaking, if it’s labeled “wine”
then it must be made with grapes. Other fruit
wines must append the fruit type to the label
(e.g. “cranberry wine.”)
WINE 101 GUIDE | WINE FOLLY
What is Wine?
Once a year, grapes are harvested to make
wine. This is where we get the term “vintage.”
Each vintage is characterized by unique
growing conditions (rainfall, wind, frost, hail,
fires, etc) that ultimately affect how the wine
tastes. This is why you’ll find some vintages
preferrable to others.
It’s useful to note that a single vintage
can affect red and white wines somewhat
The grapes used for winemaking are not like
the ones you’ll find in the grocery store. Wine
grapes are smaller, sweeter, have thicker skins,
and contains seeds. These attributes give
wine its unique acquired taste.
What’s surprising is most wine is made from
grapes of a single species called Vitis vinifera.
This species originated in the Caucasus
Mountains of Eastern Europe. We’ve made
wine with this species for about 10,000 years.
Today, there are about 1,400 grape cultivars
used in commercial wine production. That said,
only about 100 of these varieties make up
75% of the world’s vineyards. This means some
wines you’ll discover are made with very rare
With so many options out there, how do you hone in on
your favorites? Well, as diverse as wine is, most wines
can be categorized into 9 styles. Once you try each of
the 9 styles, you’ll have a pretty good idea of what you
like and don’t like.
Consider this a homework assignment.
Taste at least o