Wine Tasting Tips : What are Legs in Wine Tasting?

By Brian Lemay 10 comments


One of the most fun steps of wine tasting
is to look at the wine’s tears. Tears are also known as legs, arches, or rivulets. What
they are is when the wine breaks into what looks like paint dripping down a wall, after
you swirl it. Sometimes it’s hard to see, and sometimes it takes a little bit of practice.
Once you see it, it will be very interesting. To look at a wine’s tears, you swirl the glass
of wine. It doesn’t matter how you swirl it. Swirl the glass of wine and then stop; you
have to be patient and wait a minute; and you watch where the wine is drifting down
the glass. Eventually, most wines will break into little rivulets; otherwise known as legs
or tears or arches, and what they mean is the more tears, the more body in a wine. Tears
are a reflection of the amount of sugar or alcohol in a wine. Water is slipping down
the side of the glass very quickly and very easily into the glass, but the little sugar
molecules; the little alcohol molecules are hanging out by themselves on the side of the
glass. It takes a while for them to group together and be heavy enough to sink down,
and once they do, they sink down very slowly, and very carefully, and they’re forming those
beautiful tears. Tears, legs, arches, rivulets; they don’t have anything to do with the wine’s
quality. A lot of people will say; oh, it’s a very fine wine, it has long, slow legs.
That’s not really true, but it does tell you quite a bit about the wine’s power and the
wine’s body. The heavier the wine, the more alcohol or the more sugar the wine has; the
slower, and thicker, and more interesting the tears will be.

10 Comments

LifeDeathAnime

Mar 3, 2009, 12:50 am Reply

Very informative. Great video.

Apollo Thunder

Apr 4, 2009, 11:48 pm Reply

yeah yeah yeah, im a Budweizer kinda guy, I drink a Mans Beverage!

carjacking09

Oct 10, 2010, 1:46 am Reply

@4cellar2door0 thats right cause it was invented in the south thats why its called a tooth brush in canada and in the north it would have been called the teeth brush

Miguel Da-Truth

Jan 1, 2011, 9:05 pm Reply

Funnest isn't a word

Rhys Francis

Feb 2, 2011, 9:20 am Reply

well actually.. the reason for this, is the alcohol in the wine, alcohol reduces the surface tension of water and other liquids quite dramatically, as you swirl it you decrease the amount of molecules, therefore decreasing the amount of energy needed for the temperature to increase slightly, as the alcohol evaporates off the surface tension of the water and other components in the wine increases they group together and run down, instead of being in a thin film.
šŸ™‚

hippiechickie18

Mar 3, 2011, 9:40 am Reply

Does body = alcohol content? In one video she said body was the tactile sensation of a wine, but here she says the legs tell you about the body/alcohol content. I'm a bit confused…

LiberalSoldier1

May 5, 2011, 4:43 am Reply

@equinoxranch That was to funny. Good one. LOL

Christopher Peters

Jun 6, 2011, 4:04 am Reply

This is totally false … the alcohol actually evaporates, it doesn't fall back down into the glass.

Ce M

May 5, 2017, 10:09 am Reply

not true. See the science of wine legs

name change

Sep 9, 2019, 12:35 am Reply

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUDcTLaWJuo

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