It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

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John Morris
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1251 Post by John Morris » November 22nd, 2020, 10:25 am

Some wines take their learning well -- well enough to garner 98 points from Suckling.

Here's the 2019 Chacra Pinot Noir Cincuenta y Cinco per Sherry-Lehman:
... Taught with tension, minerality and neutral oak, this Pinot is breathtaking in its purity of fruit. ...
Studies show, however, that teaching is more effective if it takes place in a less tense environment.

And I shudder to think what "taught with ... neutral oak" might mean. Sounds like corporal punishment. I thought that was prohibited in schools these days.

If they meant "taut with tension," that would be redundant, and I have no idea what "taut ... with neutral oak" would mean. In any event, the wine is aged in second, third and fourth-use barrels, according to Sherry-Lehman's product listing, and second and (probably) third-year barrels typically aren't neutral.
"But they told me there would be a hand basket."

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1252 Post by RichardFlack » November 22nd, 2020, 10:50 am

Tightrope instructor.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1253 Post by GregT » November 22nd, 2020, 11:38 am

Taught with tension is fantastic.

Rather than hinting at nuance, or rising vertically, or existing in dimensions, it's now instructing us! Teaching.

I imagine the wine must be like Charlton Heston - standing alone to face the crowd, sweating, teeth clenched, delivering the lesson of a lifetime - "this Pinot is breathtaking - and woe betide the unbelievers!"

Brilliant reviewer!
G . T a t a r

[i]"the incorrect overuse of apostrophes is staggering these days. I wonder if half the adults these days have any idea what they are for." Chris Seiber, 5/14/19[/i]

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1254 Post by John Morris » November 22nd, 2020, 11:44 am

RichardFlack wrote:
November 22nd, 2020, 10:50 am
Tightrope instructor.
And if you lose your balance and fall, you'll be whacked with a stick. But it will have been seasoned for at least two or three years.
"But they told me there would be a hand basket."

"I'm not slurring my words. I'm speaking cursive."

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1255 Post by John Morris » November 25th, 2020, 9:05 am

A Black Forest cake by any other name is ....
2017 Raymond Cabernet Sauvignon Sommelier Collection
"In February 2019, winemaker Stephanie Putnam and proprietor Jean-Charles Boisset hosted the ninth annual blending session with 13 sommeliers to create this on-premise only offering. It is a blend of 53% Lake County, 30% Napa County and 17% Sonoma County fruit. Medium garnet-purple in color, it leaps from the glass with vibrant red and black currant scents, followed by hints of dark chocolate-covered cherries, raspberry coulis, bouquet garni and pencil shavings with a waft of rose hip tea. The medium to full-bodied palate is soft, juicy and refreshing, adding loads of savory sparks to the suggestions on the nose, finishing long and mineral laced. It is a very different, accessible, savory-led expression of Northern California Cabernet and I love it!"-Lisa Perrotti-Brown, MW - 91 points
See collected Perrotti-Brown references to Black Forest cake at post #825
"But they told me there would be a hand basket."

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Re: It's critic bingo! Let's start with Vinous.

#1256 Post by J D o v e » November 25th, 2020, 3:46 pm

John Morris wrote:
April 13th, 2017, 1:21 pm
Bill Klapp e-mailed me to say "You need a bigger bingo card," and offered the following list:

"Lifted"
"Iconic" (shame on you for that not being number one!) "Sheer"
"Pure" (especially "exceptional purity", often coupled with "striking balance") "Soaring"
"X wine is all about..."
"Haunting"
"Utterly captivating"
"Sculpted"
"X wine impresses for its..."
"A wine that speaks to (or with) [add trite, meaningless term at random from bingo card]"
"Total knockout"
"Gravitas" (as in "endowed with serious palate intensity and gravitas from start to finish")
"Super-impressive"
"Simply"
"Remarkable depth"
"Pure sensuality"
"Absolutely gorgeous"
"Voluptuousness"
Just curious, what’s wrong with lifted?
J i m (Bordeauxnut)

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1257 Post by John Morris » November 25th, 2020, 4:09 pm

It's not necessarily wrong, but as I understand it, it once was used in a narrow, technical sense to mean the wine had some volatile acidity (e.g., acetic acid). In small quantities, that can enliven the aroma and taste of wine.

Now "lifted" is used willy-nilly. In many case it seems to indicate a bright, maybe red-fruited note, versus a ripe, darker-fruited wine. But I've seen it used with wines in the latter category. I think it's lost any fixed meaning among critics.

Looking at Bill K's list is interesting. It predates the ascendancy of "pedigree," "beams of ...," "nuances" and wines with dimensions greater than three.
"But they told me there would be a hand basket."

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Re: It's critic bingo! Let's start with Vinous.

#1258 Post by RichardFlack » November 25th, 2020, 4:21 pm

J Dove wrote:
November 25th, 2020, 3:46 pm
John Morris wrote:
April 13th, 2017, 1:21 pm
Bill Klapp e-mailed me to say "You need a bigger bingo card," and offered the following list:

"Lifted"
"Iconic" (shame on you for that not being number one!) "Sheer"
"Pure" (especially "exceptional purity", often coupled with "striking balance") "Soaring"
"X wine is all about..."
"Haunting"
"Utterly captivating"
"Sculpted"
"X wine impresses for its..."
"A wine that speaks to (or with) [add trite, meaningless term at random from bingo card]"
"Total knockout"
"Gravitas" (as in "endowed with serious palate intensity and gravitas from start to finish")
"Super-impressive"
"Simply"
"Remarkable depth"
"Pure sensuality"
"Absolutely gorgeous"
"Voluptuousness"
Just curious, what’s wrong with lifted?
“outstanding effort” (optionally add , in this vintage)

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1259 Post by J D o v e » November 25th, 2020, 4:30 pm

John Morris wrote:
November 25th, 2020, 4:09 pm
It's not necessarily wrong, but as I understand it, it once was used in a narrow, technical sense to mean the wine had some volatile acidity (e.g., acetic acid). In small quantities, that can enliven the aroma and taste of wine.

Now "lifted" is used willy-nilly. In many case it seems to indicate a bright, maybe red-fruited note, versus a ripe, darker-fruited wine. But I've seen it used with wines in the latter category. I think it's lost any fixed meaning among critics.

Looking at Bill K's list is interesting. It predates the ascendancy of "pedigree," "beams of ...," "nuances" and wines with dimensions greater than three.
Yeah, it’s appropriate (IMO) to use it as you describe — to highlight some volatile acidity that accentuates the aromatics of the wines.
J i m (Bordeauxnut)

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1260 Post by Keith Levenberg » November 26th, 2020, 10:00 am

My favorite square on the Galloni card are the wines that are super-expressive and also closed.

"The 2018 Pape Clément is dense, powerful, and brooding. In most vintages, Pape Clément is much more showy and inviting, but the 2018 is in no mood to show all of its cards. Instead, we find a Pape Clément that explodes with vertical intensity and lift. Captivating scents of gravel, smoke, leather, tobacco, chocolate and incense add layers of complexity. I can't wait to see how the 2018 ages. Today, it is super expressive. The blend is 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc. New oak is 45%. Tasted four times."

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1261 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » November 26th, 2020, 10:36 am

Keith Levenberg wrote:
November 26th, 2020, 10:00 am
My favorite square on the Galloni card are the wines that are super-expressive and also closed.

"The 2018 Pape Clément is dense, powerful, and brooding. In most vintages, Pape Clément is much more showy and inviting, but the 2018 is in no mood to show all of its cards. Instead, we find a Pape Clément that explodes with vertical intensity and lift. Captivating scents of gravel, smoke, leather, tobacco, chocolate and incense add layers of complexity. I can't wait to see how the 2018 ages. Today, it is super expressive. The blend is 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc. New oak is 45%. Tasted four times."
Hard to imagine a more contradictory note. His writing clearly is not “finessed”.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1262 Post by Jeff Leve » November 26th, 2020, 10:50 am

John Morris wrote:
November 25th, 2020, 4:09 pm
It's not necessarily wrong, but as I understand it, it once was used in a narrow, technical sense to mean the wine had some volatile acidity (e.g., acetic acid). In small quantities, that can enliven the aroma and taste of wine.

Now "lifted" is used willy-nilly. In many case it seems to indicate a bright, maybe red-fruited note, versus a ripe, darker-fruited wine. But I've seen it used with wines in the latter category. I think it's lost any fixed meaning among critics.
Lift is a good term. It is another way to say freshness or balanced acidity. You can find this in black as well as in red fruits. I think it is an almost universal term. Though I could be wrong on that.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1263 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » November 26th, 2020, 10:54 am

Jeff Leve wrote:
November 26th, 2020, 10:50 am
John Morris wrote:
November 25th, 2020, 4:09 pm
It's not necessarily wrong, but as I understand it, it once was used in a narrow, technical sense to mean the wine had some volatile acidity (e.g., acetic acid). In small quantities, that can enliven the aroma and taste of wine.

Now "lifted" is used willy-nilly. In many case it seems to indicate a bright, maybe red-fruited note, versus a ripe, darker-fruited wine. But I've seen it used with wines in the latter category. I think it's lost any fixed meaning among critics.
Lift is a good term. It is another way to say freshness or balanced acidity. You can find this in black as well as in red fruits. I think it is an almost universal term. Though I could be wrong on that.
I agree with Jeffois here. I used that term often, especially with some Chinon and Beaujolais estates that I like in years, say, like 2014.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1264 Post by Jim Stewart » November 26th, 2020, 11:01 am

I was "taught with tension" by some of the nuns at my parochial schools!
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But I've just noticed that my mind is asleep.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1265 Post by Jayson Cohen » November 26th, 2020, 11:36 am

Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
November 26th, 2020, 10:36 am
Keith Levenberg wrote:
November 26th, 2020, 10:00 am
My favorite square on the Galloni card are the wines that are super-expressive and also closed.

"The 2018 Pape Clément is dense, powerful, and brooding. In most vintages, Pape Clément is much more showy and inviting, but the 2018 is in no mood to show all of its cards. Instead, we find a Pape Clément that explodes with vertical intensity and lift. Captivating scents of gravel, smoke, leather, tobacco, chocolate and incense add layers of complexity. I can't wait to see how the 2018 ages. Today, it is super expressive. The blend is 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc. New oak is 45%. Tasted four times."
Hard to imagine a more contradictory note. His writing clearly is not “finessed”.
He could use a ghost writer. I mean, editor.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1266 Post by Jayson Cohen » November 26th, 2020, 11:46 am

On lifted or lift, I think it’s a good term but I’m not sure I agree with Jeff saying it means “balanced acidity” unless I’m not understanding. Lifted usually refers to redder fruited aromatics that have a nasal impact, certainly affected by acidity. But “balanced acidity” refers to mouthfeel normally or a sense that acid balanced other elements. For example, a nicely aged Bordeaux or a German Riesling can have balanced acidity on the palate but not a sense of lift in the nose. And a wine that has a bit too much VA can come off as lifted aromatically but is unbalanced, both in nose and mouth. Of course, a wine can also have both lift and balanced acidity.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1267 Post by RichardFlack » November 26th, 2020, 1:39 pm

Jayson Cohen wrote:
November 26th, 2020, 11:36 am
Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
November 26th, 2020, 10:36 am
Keith Levenberg wrote:
November 26th, 2020, 10:00 am
My favorite square on the Galloni card are the wines that are super-expressive and also closed.

"The 2018 Pape Clément is dense, powerful, and brooding. In most vintages, Pape Clément is much more showy and inviting, but the 2018 is in no mood to show all of its cards. Instead, we find a Pape Clément that explodes with vertical intensity and lift. Captivating scents of gravel, smoke, leather, tobacco, chocolate and incense add layers of complexity. I can't wait to see how the 2018 ages. Today, it is super expressive. The blend is 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc. New oak is 45%. Tasted four times."
Hard to imagine a more contradictory note. His writing clearly is not “finessed”.
He could use a ghost writer. I mean, editor.
Wow. Brooding, yet expressive.
in no mood to show all of its cards. yet explodes with vertical intensity and lift.

Clearly tasting out of both sides of his mouth.

A pity he didn’t taste half a dozen times, we’d have an even more hilarious review.

I’m not as much against some colourful phrases in moderation as others here if they help paint an impressionist picture of the wine (although I do enjoy poking fun too) but this is just plain confused.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1268 Post by Otto Forsberg » November 26th, 2020, 2:21 pm

I've grown to read "lift" being used as an euphemism for VA and that is the way I use the term as well.

I see nowadays many people use "lift" in wildly different ways, but to me it's just the volatile stuff, baby.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1269 Post by Tim Heaton » November 26th, 2020, 3:59 pm

Pretty sure this lot here is the only one that (has any time!) reads the notes. Everyone else is too busy trying to keep their heads above water and only (feel the) need to see the associated points.

As far as 'lift' goes, I use it to mean enough acidity to carry whatever volume of fruit and/or tannin needed to keep the wine in optimal balance; I use it instead of 'cut', whereby I mean the acidity isn't quite as 'integrated', and dominates the others, even if slightly. Of course, this could simply be a matter of time before those terms get reversed. Has zero to do with VA. For me.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1270 Post by Julian Marshall » November 27th, 2020, 6:44 am

I always thought "Lift" was about Miran Kegl's helicopter?

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1271 Post by Marcu$ Stanley » November 27th, 2020, 8:05 am

I admit to being a big abuser of "lifted" and "pure" in my personal tasting notes. They have become personal shorthands, in the way that very vague terms sometimes do. For me "lifted" indicates a particular combination of fruit intensity with lightness on the palate, usually in wines with a somewhat red fruited character. I think I mostly use "pure" to refer to a certain refreshing element like cool fresh river water running through a wine, that can appear in a wide range of styles. These are hopelessly subjective terms.

I do think it's funny how post-Parker terms like "freshness" and "purity" have become all purpose positive descriptors critics sprinkle through their good reviews, like "dense" and "tremendously concentrated" were for Parker. There are a lot of reviews that basically describe wines as tasting like melted fudge brownies but then rush to assure you that they feature "great freshness and purity and perfectly judged acidity".

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1272 Post by John Morris » November 27th, 2020, 12:16 pm

I think the various posts here demonstrate my point that "lifted" has no common meaning anymore. Everyone uses it as they please for VA, for red-fruited, for wines with good acidity that somehow shows in the nose), so it conveys nothing.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1273 Post by RichardFlack » November 27th, 2020, 2:57 pm

I thought it was synonym for boosted, liberated, or other euphemisms for removal from a store without bothering the cashier.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1274 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » November 27th, 2020, 4:04 pm

Julian Marshall wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 6:44 am
I always thought "Lift" was about Miran Kegl's helicopter?
I think he actually said - no, yelled - “take-off”!
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1275 Post by Jeff Leve » November 27th, 2020, 4:21 pm

John Morris wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 12:16 pm
I think the various posts here demonstrate my point that "lifted" has no common meaning anymore. Everyone uses it as they please for VA, for red-fruited, for wines with good acidity that somehow shows in the nose), so it conveys nothing.
People on this site might use lifted differently. But I think most critics and writers use it as another term for freshness. Wines that are fresh have acidity and are thus, lifted.

I’ve seen others terms discussed here that posters don’t agree on the definition while most critics agree on the meaning of the descriptor.

If a lack of understanding nullified the value or usage of words, we would find it even harder to communicate than we already do.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1276 Post by John Morris » November 27th, 2020, 4:39 pm

But winemakers typically use it in its original sense, referring to VA, and I think some critics (John Gilman and, I think, William Kelley) do as well.

If other people use it to mean less ripe or red fruits (an aroma) and others use it to refer to acidity (a taste), then I have to study each person's usage and it is not helping communication at all.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1277 Post by J D o v e » November 27th, 2020, 4:47 pm

John Morris wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 4:39 pm
But winemakers typically use it in its original sense, referring to VA, and I think some critics (John Gilman and, I think, William Kelley) do as well.

If other people use it to mean less ripe or red fruits (an aroma) and others use it to refer to acidity (a taste), then I have to study each person's usage and it is not helping communication at all.
I have never seen the use of the word ‘lifted’ in a tasting note by professional wine critic that referred to anything other than the aromatics. It is reference to volatiles in the wine lifting the aromas. I’m sure someone will prove me wrong. But I haven’t haven’t seen it or don’t remember seeing it used otherwise. Of course I’ve only read a tiny fraction of all wine tasting notes.

Notes are obviously strictly personal. So if it means something different to someone else, they should go for it. As long as they understand it, what else matters?
J i m (Bordeauxnut)

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1278 Post by Keith Levenberg » November 27th, 2020, 5:20 pm

Clearly this industry needs a style manual. Since nobody else wants to do it, I will have to issue the ruling myself.

Lifted: Avoid. If you mean VA, say VA.

[Same rule applies to the other perfectly good English word, I forget what it was, that wine critics decided to use as a technical connotation for VA without mentioning VA or telling anybody about the misappropriation.]

Can't say I find it especially useful to describe regular acidity (or anything else), either. I can understand how acidity can make a wine feel fresh, energetic, vibrant, juicy, etc. - there are many good words out there to describe whatever particular sensation you're going for. I cannot wrap my head around what sensation "lifted" is supposed to connote. Is it a metaphor for something - if so, what? Or it supposed to be literal, like the aromas literally lift higher into the air relative to other wines? If the latter, we've got perfectly good words to describe that, too, without introducing ambiguity about whether there might be a volatility issue.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1279 Post by J D o v e » November 27th, 2020, 5:26 pm

Keith Levenberg wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 5:20 pm
Clearly this industry needs a style manual. Since nobody else wants to do it, I will have to issue the ruling myself.

Lifted: Avoid. If you mean VA, say VA.

[Same rule applies to the other perfectly good English word, I forget what it was, that wine critics decided to use as a technical connotation for VA without mentioning VA or telling anybody about the misappropriation.]

Can't say I find it especially useful to describe regular acidity (or anything else), either. I can understand how acidity can make a wine feel fresh, energetic, vibrant, juicy, etc. - there are many good words out there to describe whatever particular sensation you're going for. I cannot wrap my head around what sensation "lifted" is supposed to connote. Is it a metaphor for something - if so, what? Or it supposed to be literal, like the aromas literally lift higher into the air relative to other wines? If the latter, we've got perfectly good words to describe that, too, without introducing ambiguity about whether there might be a volatility issue.
Agree to disagree.

Lifted is positive. Specifically calling out VA requires all sorts of other language to avoid causing alarm. One word, very specific meaning. It’s a hobby. There is a lingo. This has specific meaning. The fact people don’t understand it is a different issue.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1280 Post by alan weinberg » November 27th, 2020, 5:33 pm

agree w Jeff Lève re lifted—very positive and fresh due to acidity.

But as soon as I see the word “sick” in a note or sales pitch, I hit delete.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1281 Post by Keith Levenberg » November 27th, 2020, 5:48 pm

J Dove wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 5:26 pm
Keith Levenberg wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 5:20 pm
Clearly this industry needs a style manual. Since nobody else wants to do it, I will have to issue the ruling myself.

Lifted: Avoid. If you mean VA, say VA.

[Same rule applies to the other perfectly good English word, I forget what it was, that wine critics decided to use as a technical connotation for VA without mentioning VA or telling anybody about the misappropriation.]

Can't say I find it especially useful to describe regular acidity (or anything else), either. I can understand how acidity can make a wine feel fresh, energetic, vibrant, juicy, etc. - there are many good words out there to describe whatever particular sensation you're going for. I cannot wrap my head around what sensation "lifted" is supposed to connote. Is it a metaphor for something - if so, what? Or it supposed to be literal, like the aromas literally lift higher into the air relative to other wines? If the latter, we've got perfectly good words to describe that, too, without introducing ambiguity about whether there might be a volatility issue.
Agree to disagree.

Lifted is positive. Specifically calling out VA requires all sorts of other language to avoid causing alarm. One word, very specific meaning. It’s a hobby. There is a lingo. This has specific meaning. The fact people don’t understand it is a different issue.
Apparently it doesn't have a specific meaning. You have knowledgeable people here saying its technical meaning is one thing and other knowledgeable people saying its technical meaning is something else. That calls for more precise language.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1282 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » November 27th, 2020, 6:36 pm

John Morris wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 4:39 pm
But winemakers typically use it in its original sense, referring to VA, and I think some critics (John Gilman and, I think, William Kelley) do as well.

If other people use it to mean less ripe or red fruits (an aroma) and others use it to refer to acidity (a taste), then I have to study each person's usage and it is not helping communication at all.
Well, y’all are opening my eyes and ears. Personally, I have never seen anyone use the term “lift” or “lifted” in reference to VA. I have used it, and only recall seeing it used, on wine that has a crisp acidic structure and freshness.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1283 Post by John Morris » November 27th, 2020, 7:04 pm

I'm compiling some "lifted" tasting notes, but this one made me roll out of my desk chair:
2017 Bouchard Pere et Fils Chevalier Montrachet
"Captivating nose melds tangerine zest, lemon, lime, clove, anise, white pepper and crushed stone, complicated by an exotic hint of passion fruit and lifted by metallic minerality. Compellingly silky, rich and sweet, with its ripe citrus flavors joined by spices, wild herbs and anise. For all its early mid-palate appeal, this wine finishes classically dry and firm, with an almost tannic impression and great rising, palate-saturating length. Wonderfully classy and light on its feet, this wine boasts the strongest projection of inner-mouth aromatics of all of these 2017s to this point. And it's more marked by its high altitude and chalky soil than by the vintage."-Stephen Tanzer
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1284 Post by John Morris » November 27th, 2020, 7:52 pm

One of the advantages of not purging my in-boxes is that I have a ready database of tasting notes. Here are some critics employing "lifted" -- for aromas, mouthfeel and finish, and often with dark fruits. It's pretty hard to see any consistent meaning.
Monica Larner, Wine Advocate
I think Larner may be the only critic using the term in its original sense. Note that "high-toned" is another term for VA, and VA is not uncommon in Barolo.

2016 Luigi Oddero Barolo – lifted/high-toned aromas with sultry dark fruit
"The Figli Luigi Oddero 2016 Barolo is a wine of enormous depth and character. It delivers the best of the Nebbiolo playlist with sultry dark fruit at its core followed by lifted or high-toned aromas of dark spice, licorice, candied orange peel and spent embers. The aromatic intensity of the wine is fitted to the underlying power and focused tightness of the mouthfeel.

Chiara Boschis Barolo Mosconi 2016 – lifted nose and mouthfeel

"The E Pira-Chiara Boschis 2016 Barolo Mosconi is a little wider and richer compared to the Cannubi, with bigger fruit, more sweetness, spice, grilled oregano and a touch of crushed hazelnut. Despite the wide net of aromas offered on the bouquet, this wine shows a very sharp and focused approach with elegantly linear tannins and matching acidity. There is a lifted quality to both the nose and the mouthfeel that gives this wine beautiful momentum and length. Mosconi is one of the headline vineyards of Monforte d'Alba."
Lisa Perotti-Brown, Wine Advocate
2019 Chateau Pontet Canet Pauillac – lifted chocolate etc.
"The blend this year is 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. Very deep purple-black colored, the 2019 Pontet-Canet has the most gorgeous, lifted perfume of lilacs, dark chocolate, Morello cherries and rosehip tea over a core of crème de cassis, plum preserves, licorice and woodsmoke with a waft of fragrant soil. Full-bodied, rich and fantastically opulent, the palate offers layer upon layer of ripe, finely grained tannins and seamless freshness, finishing very long and mineral laced. A real head-turner, this beauty is absolutely going to steal your heart!"
Roger Voss, Wine Enthusiast
2019 Chateau Sainte Roseline Cru Classe Lampe de Meduse Par Monsieur Christian Lacroix Provence Rose –lifted aftertaste
"French fashion icon Christian Lacroix designed this limited-edition bottle to celebrate 70 years since the launch of this brand. Yellow and tropical fruits come through in this warm, lightly textured wine. There is a touch of spice from the Grenache in the blend along with a lifted herbal aftertaste."
Jeb Dunnuck
2016 Alain Voge Cornas Vieilles Vignes – lifted black and blue fruits -- i.e., not red fruits
"The 2016 Cornas Les Vieilles Vignes is similar in style to the Vieilles Fontaines, just slightly less concentrated. It comes from the Combe, Patou, La Côte, Les Mazards and Chaillot lieux-dits and is partially destemmed and brought up mostly in neutral barrels. Lifted notes of black and blue fruits, damp earth, spring flowers, and violets all emerge from this full-bodied, concentrated yet elegant red that stays balanced on the palate, with good acidity. It's another powerful, seriously endowed, pedal-to-the-metal Cornas that will have two decades of longevity."
James Suckling
2016 Sena – lifted blackberries and blueberries -- i.e., not red fruits
"Aromas are lifted and bright in this wine with loads of blackberries and blueberries. Full body, velvety tannins. Gorgeous texture. Very pure fruit. A bright and more fundamental Seña than last vintages. Restrained at the end. 55% cabernet, 20% malbec, 12% petit verdot, 8% carmenere, 5% cabernet franc."

2015 Mastroberardino Taurasi Radici – lifted dried meat, sea urchin and bark
“I love the spicy and lifted notes here of caramelized orange peel, dried meat, blackcurrants, pomegranate, sea urchin and bark. A seamless and wonderfully elegant, medium-bodied palate follows with finely grained tannins and loads of floral undertones. This wine is all about transparency and subtlety. Best Radici in years. Drink now.”
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1285 Post by John Morris » November 27th, 2020, 8:02 pm

Decanter describes the original meaning in a 2018 article about volatile acidity:
What is volatile acidity? Ask Decanter

Volatile acidity is made from compounds in types of acid found in wine, showing an aroma, rather than found on the palate.

‘In simple terms, it refers to the acidic elements of a wine that are gaseous, rather than liquid, and therefore can be sensed as a smell,’ said Julia Sewell, Assistant Head Sommelier at Hide in Mayfair and a judge for the Decanter World Wine Awards.

‘The major compound responsible for this aroma is acetic acid, which is more commonly known as vinegar. A secondary compound that is formed at the same time is ethyl acetate, which smells more like nail polish remover or paint thinner.’ ...

‘Although the presence of high amounts of VA is considered undesirable, in some cases a touch of volatility is no bad thing,’ said Natasha Hughes MW in her guide to wine ‘flaws’.

‘It’s an important characteristic in many wines that adds complexity and interest; often, in a positive manner, it can be described as adding ‘a lifted character’ to the aromas of the wine,’ said Sewell.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1286 Post by Keith Levenberg » November 27th, 2020, 8:12 pm

ah, that's it! "High-toned" was the other phrase I was fishing for that certain wine writers misappropriated as a technical codeword for VA while most people innocently assumed it was just referring to a sense of brightness or precision.

My schnoz is not fine-tuned enough to isolate "VA, but below the threshold where it's a bad thing." If there's enough VA for me to notice it as VA, it's in flaw territory. Maybe if I ever find myself locked in a room with a bunch of folks with MS pins they can show me which wines are pleasantly lifted by VA as distinguished from those that just have nice acidity.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1287 Post by John Morris » November 27th, 2020, 9:03 pm

Keith Levenberg wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 8:12 pm
ah, that's it! "High-toned" was the other phrase I was fishing for that certain wine writers misappropriated as a technical codeword for VA while most people innocently assumed it was just referring to a sense of brightness or precision.

My schnoz is not fine-tuned enough to isolate "VA, but below the threshold where it's a bad thing." If there's enough VA for me to notice it as VA, it's in flaw territory. Maybe if I ever find myself locked in a room with a bunch of folks with MS pins they can show me which wines are pleasantly lifted by VA as distinguished from those that just have nice acidity.
I think the terms originated with winemakers for VA. I've only noticed it in tasting notes in the last couple of years. It appears to me it's one of the many cases where people (critics and others) adopt a term of art to sound knowledgeable when they don't really know what it means (e.g, tasting notes that describe a wine has having a lot of dry extract).

As for what's good VA, there have been posts here by winemakers explaining how a certain amount of VA can accentuate other aromas. (Think salt, sugar and acids in cooking.) My impression from the earlier discussions was that acetic acid might sometimes be beneficial aromatically even if it is below the level of detection, or at least wouldn't be identified by someone who's not looking for it.

I've certainly had wines where I picked up a bit of acetic acid, but it wasn't objectionable.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1288 Post by Keith Levenberg » November 27th, 2020, 10:55 pm

John Morris wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 9:03 pm
As for what's good VA, there have been posts here by winemakers explaining how a certain amount of VA can accentuate other aromas. (Think salt, sugar and acids in cooking.) My impression from the earlier discussions was that acetic acid might sometimes be beneficial aromatically even if it is below the level of detection, or at least wouldn't be identified by someone who's not looking for it.

I've certainly had wines where I picked up a bit of acetic acid, but it wasn't objectionable.
Not questioning the existence of a "good" level of VA (surely it's rarely or never at absolute zero), just that I have no idea what the perceptible difference would be between a wine with accentuated aromas because of VA and a wine with accentuated aromas because of whatever else makes a wine aromatic. You might have a more fine-tuned instrument for acetic acid than those of us without home vinegar operations.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1289 Post by Otto Forsberg » November 28th, 2020, 3:42 am

Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 6:36 pm
Well, y’all are opening my eyes and ears. Personally, I have never seen anyone use the term “lift” or “lifted” in reference to VA. I have used it, and only recall seeing it used, on wine that has a crisp acidic structure and freshness.
Busted! I thought you've read hundreds of my TNs I've posted here, but I guess you just skim through the points without paying attention to the wall of text in-between. neener

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1290 Post by Jim Stewart » November 28th, 2020, 4:34 am

John Morris wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 7:52 pm
One of the advantages of not purging my in-boxes is that I have a ready database of tasting notes. Here are some critics employing "lifted" -- for aromas, mouthfeel and finish, and often with dark fruits. It's pretty hard to see any consistent meaning.

....
....
I know nothing about the original intended use of the the word, but these various uses quoted seem to be fairly consistent if one gives the word "lifted" its simplest definition.
lifted: raised to a higher level or position

Maybe this word has changed from it original use in describing something very specific about an aspect of a wine and returned to its everyday literal non-wine meaning? I can imagine the following scenario: The first wine reviewer to use the term meant something different and very specific in using it. Subsequent wine reviewers didn't have a clue what the first reviewer was actually getting at, but liked the word and were very happy to add it to their vocabulary, using it mostly in the literal sense.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1291 Post by William Kelley » November 28th, 2020, 4:52 am

Keith Levenberg wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 5:48 pm
J Dove wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 5:26 pm
Keith Levenberg wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 5:20 pm
Clearly this industry needs a style manual. Since nobody else wants to do it, I will have to issue the ruling myself.

Lifted: Avoid. If you mean VA, say VA.

[Same rule applies to the other perfectly good English word, I forget what it was, that wine critics decided to use as a technical connotation for VA without mentioning VA or telling anybody about the misappropriation.]

Can't say I find it especially useful to describe regular acidity (or anything else), either. I can understand how acidity can make a wine feel fresh, energetic, vibrant, juicy, etc. - there are many good words out there to describe whatever particular sensation you're going for. I cannot wrap my head around what sensation "lifted" is supposed to connote. Is it a metaphor for something - if so, what? Or it supposed to be literal, like the aromas literally lift higher into the air relative to other wines? If the latter, we've got perfectly good words to describe that, too, without introducing ambiguity about whether there might be a volatility issue.
Agree to disagree.

Lifted is positive. Specifically calling out VA requires all sorts of other language to avoid causing alarm. One word, very specific meaning. It’s a hobby. There is a lingo. This has specific meaning. The fact people don’t understand it is a different issue.
Apparently it doesn't have a specific meaning. You have knowledgeable people here saying its technical meaning is one thing and other knowledgeable people saying its technical meaning is something else. That calls for more precise language.
I'm not sure I agree, Keith. To me, the terms "lifted" and "high-toned" (and especially the latter) are quite readily relatable to a wine with a tangier, livelier, more piquant register of aromas. The fact that these terms have been used in a sort of imprecise, free-association word soup by some wine writers—and surely by some amateurs, too—doesn't necessarily mean we should expunge them from our vocabularies. Perhaps we can agree, at least, that we should prioritize expunging "metallic minerality" first, and deal with "lifted / high-toned" later?

And I agree with Jim that once one starts mentioning properties known by informed amateurs be "flaws", it's hard to reconcile that with a positive tasting note. It also lends pseudo-scientific precision to a tasting note (just like citing pH, TA, IPT, or even, frankly, varietal composition without commentary). Am I to write that "I'd guess that this wine has around 0.65 grams VA [as g/L H2SO4, which is the way it's quantified in France, whereas it's measured as g/L CH3COOH elsewhere], which is on the high side of what's conventional in Burgundy, but which is perfectly integrated in this particular example, bringing liveliness to the flavors and aromas"? I think the audience for writing of that sort would be rather limited. If I mention "volatile acidity" by name, therefore, it's because it stands out as borderline disjointed or worse, and caveat emptor.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1292 Post by William Kelley » November 28th, 2020, 5:06 am

John Morris wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 9:03 pm
....tasting notes that describe a wine has having a lot of dry extract....

As for what's good VA, there have been posts here by winemakers explaining how a certain amount of VA can accentuate other aromas.
Just a word to defend mentioning "dry extract" (one might just as well say "extract", but French oenology measures "extrait sec" and the term has become an albeit redundant proxy for extract when one talks with winemakers in France). Personally, I find this a very important differentiator between (to limit myself to the regions I review) white Burgundies made with mature grapes and long, firm press cycles (sometimes with crushing before pressing) vs. wines made from rapid, very gentle press cycles that produce super clear, pure juice. The former category (think Coche, d'Auvenay, Guffens-Heynen, and most old white Burgundy from the days before pneumatic presses) has real physical structure in the mouth - chalky extract from the skins that gives the wine three-dimensional presence beyond what comes from alcohol, glycerol and oak extractives. The latter are much softer, more consensual, less grippy or multidimensional. So talking about dry extract is a way to signal that there's some real substance to the wine, something to carry it through time, and that it's more than just some sort of oenological confection of fruit and acid.

As for volatile acidity, just extrapolating from the analyses I've seen, most red wines in Burgundy seem to come in between 0.40 and 0.65 g/L quantified against H2SO4 (as I observed above, this is how the French measure VA but not how it's measured in e.g. California).
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1293 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » November 28th, 2020, 5:32 am

Otto Forsberg wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 3:42 am
Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 6:36 pm
Well, y’all are opening my eyes and ears. Personally, I have never seen anyone use the term “lift” or “lifted” in reference to VA. I have used it, and only recall seeing it used, on wine that has a crisp acidic structure and freshness.
Busted! I thought you've read hundreds of my TNs I've posted here, but I guess you just skim through the points without paying attention to the wall of text in-between. neener

They are so long, so complex, that I have to flip them to one of my associates to prepare an executive summary. Points first. One of them had the nerve to ask how this Viking guy could drink 13 bottles in one evening and still write semi-coherently.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1294 Post by John Morris » November 28th, 2020, 5:58 am

Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 5:32 am
Otto Forsberg wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 3:42 am
Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
November 27th, 2020, 6:36 pm
Well, y’all are opening my eyes and ears. Personally, I have never seen anyone use the term “lift” or “lifted” in reference to VA. I have used it, and only recall seeing it used, on wine that has a crisp acidic structure and freshness.
Busted! I thought you've read hundreds of my TNs I've posted here, but I guess you just skim through the points without paying attention to the wall of text in-between. neener

They are so long, so complex, that I have to flip them to one of my associates to prepare an executive summary. Points first. One of them had the nerve to ask how this Viking guy could drink 13 bottles in one evening and still write semi-coherently.
Robert, Robert, Robert, you're so careless with your terms. Otto is a Finn, not a Scandinavian.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1295 Post by John Morris » November 28th, 2020, 6:03 am

William Kelley wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 5:06 am
Just a word to defend mentioning "dry extract" (one might just as well say "extract", but French oenology measures "extrait sec" and the term has become an albeit redundant proxy for extract when one talks with winemakers in France). Personally, I find this a very important differentiator between (to limit myself to the regions I review) white Burgundies made with mature grapes and long, firm press cycles (sometimes with crushing before pressing) vs. wines made from rapid, very gentle press cycles that produce super clear, pure juice. The former category (think Coche, d'Auvenay, Guffens-Heynen, and most old white Burgundy from the days before pneumatic presses) has real physical structure in the mouth - chalky extract from the skins that gives the wine three-dimensional presence beyond what comes from alcohol, glycerol and oak extractives. The latter are much softer, more consensual, less grippy or multidimensional. So talking about dry extract is a way to signal that there's some real substance to the wine, something to carry it through time, and that it's more than just some sort of oenological confection of fruit and acid. ...
I have no problem calling a wine "extracted," meaning it's dense and has texture. But "dry extract" is a lab term. As I recall, you cook off the liquid and see what solids are left. When someone writes that a wine has a lot of dry extract based only on tasting it, I suspect they mean it's tannic and has a lot of flavor. I'm pretty sure that is imperfectly correlated with dry extract, and they're just trying to sound technically informed. (I've only encountered "dry extract" in notes on reds, but I know that some white can seem extracted.)
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1296 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » November 28th, 2020, 6:05 am

John Morris wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 5:58 am
Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 5:32 am
Otto Forsberg wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 3:42 am


Busted! I thought you've read hundreds of my TNs I've posted here, but I guess you just skim through the points without paying attention to the wall of text in-between. neener

They are so long, so complex, that I have to flip them to one of my associates to prepare an executive summary. Points first. One of them had the nerve to ask how this Viking guy could drink 13 bottles in one evening and still write semi-coherently.
Robert, Robert, Robert, you're so careless with your terms. Otto is a Finn, not a Scandinavian.
My wife is Norwegian. Aren't they all the same? At least they look so from my Cuban perspective.

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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1297 Post by John Morris » November 28th, 2020, 6:14 am

Don't ever say that to a Swede, or a Norwegian.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1298 Post by William Kelley » November 28th, 2020, 6:19 am

John Morris wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 6:03 am
William Kelley wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 5:06 am
Just a word to defend mentioning "dry extract" (one might just as well say "extract", but French oenology measures "extrait sec" and the term has become an albeit redundant proxy for extract when one talks with winemakers in France). Personally, I find this a very important differentiator between (to limit myself to the regions I review) white Burgundies made with mature grapes and long, firm press cycles (sometimes with crushing before pressing) vs. wines made from rapid, very gentle press cycles that produce super clear, pure juice. The former category (think Coche, d'Auvenay, Guffens-Heynen, and most old white Burgundy from the days before pneumatic presses) has real physical structure in the mouth - chalky extract from the skins that gives the wine three-dimensional presence beyond what comes from alcohol, glycerol and oak extractives. The latter are much softer, more consensual, less grippy or multidimensional. So talking about dry extract is a way to signal that there's some real substance to the wine, something to carry it through time, and that it's more than just some sort of oenological confection of fruit and acid. ...
I have no problem calling a wine "extracted," meaning it's dense and has texture. But "dry extract" is a lab term. As I recall, you cook off the liquid and see what solids are left. When someone writes that a wine has a lot of dry extract based only on tasting it, I suspect they mean it's tannic and has a lot of flavor. I'm pretty sure that is imperfectly correlated with dry extract, and they're just trying to sound technically informed. (I've only encountered "dry extract" in notes on reds, but I know that some white can seem extracted.)
Oh, I don't recall ever seeing it in a review of a red! It's a term I only use with reference to white wines, to emphasize that they have real extract from the skins. Perhaps I should just write "extract", but I have gotten into the habit from talking with French winemakers who will use the term "extrait sec" to refer to this quality in white wines.
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Taught With Tension")

#1299 Post by Otto Forsberg » November 28th, 2020, 6:27 am

Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 5:32 am
They are so long, so complex, that I have to flip them to one of my associates to prepare an executive summary. Points first. One of them had the nerve to ask how this Viking guy could drink 13 bottles in one evening and still write semi-coherently.
I hope you told them that drinking 13 wines doesn't imply drinking 13 bottles of wine! [rofl.gif] And 12-13 wines is basically the standard. It gets hard when I get past the 30 notes mark, although my record is 120 notes at one go!
John Morris wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 5:58 am
Robert, Robert, Robert, you're so careless with your terms. Otto is a Finn, not a Scandinavian.
And this. Back in the days of yore we had to fight those looting viking dastards!
John Morris wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 6:03 am
William Kelley wrote:
November 28th, 2020, 5:06 am
Just a word to defend mentioning "dry extract" (one might just as well say "extract", but French oenology measures "extrait sec" and the term has become an albeit redundant proxy for extract when one talks with winemakers in France). Personally, I find this a very important differentiator between (to limit myself to the regions I review) white Burgundies made with mature grapes and long, firm press cycles (sometimes with crushing before pressing) vs. wines made from rapid, very gentle press cycles that produce super clear, pure juice. The former category (think Coche, d'Auvenay, Guffens-Heynen, and most old white Burgundy from the days before pneumatic presses) has real physical structure in the mouth - chalky extract from the skins that gives the wine three-dimensional presence beyond what comes from alcohol, glycerol and oak extractives. The latter are much softer, more consensual, less grippy or multidimensional. So talking about dry extract is a way to signal that there's some real substance to the wine, something to carry it through time, and that it's more than just some sort of oenological confection of fruit and acid. ...
I have no problem calling a wine "extracted," meaning it's dense and has texture. But "dry extract" is a lab term. As I recall, you cook off the liquid and see what solids are left. When someone writes that a wine has a lot of dry extract based only on tasting it, I suspect they mean it's tannic and has a lot of flavor. I'm pretty sure that is imperfectly correlated with dry extract, and they're just trying to sound technically informed. (I've only encountered "dry extract" in notes on reds, but I know that some white can seem extracted.)
Well, extracted normally implies that there is a lot of dry extract in the wine. Normally you don't say (or at least I haven't seen the term used) that whites are extracted, because technically you don't extract white wines - as extraction happens during skin maceration. However, William is correct in that different ripeness of grapes and winemaking decisions have a noticeable impact on the dry extract i.e. the solids that remain after cooking the liquids off (exactly as you said) of a white wine. Normally dry white wines tend to hover around 19-23 g/l of dry extract, so if the dry extract of a white wine is around 25 g/l, it certainly starts to have a tactile impact on the mouthfeel. Similarly red wines are around 25-35 g/l, so wines that are at or less than 30 g/l don't feel extracted, but the closer you get to 35 g/l, the denser and chewier the wine starts to feel. I think it is perfectly understandable if someone says that a white wine (or a sparkling wine, for that matter) seems to be noticeably high in dry extract. However, it would seem a bit weird reading a white wine to be extracted, unless there was some extraction done as part of the vinification process - like, say, prolonged cold soak before fermentation.

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Otto Forsberg
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Re: It's critic bingo! ("Lifted by metallic minerality")

#1300 Post by Otto Forsberg » November 28th, 2020, 6:28 am

And I think it doesn't matter whether one says a wine has a lot of extract or dry extract, because they mean exactly the same thing.

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