Wine body has to do with the perceived weight, density, or heft that the wine has in your mouth...which is where the term 'mouthfeel' comes into play!
Some wines are voluptious in their volume and body, some are thin and dainty.
To illustrate this tactile difference, many people like to use the analagy of comparing skim milk (light-bodied) to 2% or whole milk (medium-bodied) to heavy cream (full-bodied).
So when you're tasting a wine, try to imagine under which 'milk category' the wine would best fit within, unless imagining whole milk while drinking a Sangiovese makes you nauseaus, then wait until after you're done drinking!
As a general rule of thumb - young wines are lighter bodied, aged wines are thicker-bodied.
Another simple rule follows suit - white wines are usually lighter boided, red wines are usually thicker bodied.
Combine the age + type of wine to easily gauge where along the spectrum of wine viscocity your wine sits.
Now body is a fairly abstract word when it comes to wine - but it's the closest we can get to describing that tacticle sensation.
You should be able to feel the weight of the wine on your tongue, and in the back of your throat when swallowing.
All wine has some degree of viscosity, aka fluidity, which is responsible for the 'legs' that appear on the sides of wine glasses after giving a wine a good swirl.
While these 'legs' don't necessarily dictate a wine's quality - they do tell us that there's a considerable amount of alcohol in the wine.
Speaking of quality - don't believe that 'thick-bodied' wines are automatically keepers, or that 'thin-bodied' wines deserve to be chucked.
Thin wines can still offer up plenty of flavor - depending on grape variety.
There are plenty of good wines in BOTH categories - and don't forget that part of the beauty of the wine world is having a myriad of wine choices available for you, when you need it, as you need it.
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|New Jersey Wineries › Easy Wine Glossary › Wine Body|
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