Full-bodied, floral, mineral… There are many ways to describe a wine. Today, we will focus on the term “mineral”. What is a mineral wine? Although the term is commonly used, few people really know what it means. Cantenac Brown explains it all to you.
What do we mean by “mineral wine”?
Amateurs and insiders agree that the minerality of a wine refers more to a sensation, a perception in the mouth, rather than a clear statement to qualify it. Indeed, this sensation is specific to the palate of each taster.
Two senses are involved in the tasting of a mineral wine: taste and smell.
If some people think that the transfer of minerals from the soil to the vine is improbable or even impossible, others tend to say that some wines present organoleptic characteristics evocative of minerals. For example, some white wines may have notes of chalk, flint or gunflint. In the mouth, a mineral wine leaves an impression of dry residue. Each wine has its own specificity! Chablis can evoke oyster shells, or Sancerre flint…
Minerality, salinity and acidity
Insofar as minerality evokes the presence of mineral salts in the wine, minerality and salinity are automatically linked. Some wines will evoke a saline perception with a return of saliva, especially red wines, where chalky tastes and graphite notes are associated. On the other hand, one should not confuse minerality and acidity of wine. While the acidity of a wine is generally carried of the aromas and flavors of fruit, causing freshness in the mouth, the minerality evokes tastes and tones from the earth.