Glossary of Wine Terms
GENERIC WINES — Blended wines with names unrelated to their origin or grapevariety.
GLASSWARE — Glasses can make a big difference in the experience of wine. Cleanliness (no detergent residue, please) and appropriate shape (to capture the pleasurable bouquet and to gently release the wine over the taste centers in the mouth) are the keys. Much has been made of the myriad of glasses that have been developed for precision tasting-from luxurious and traditional Baccarat crystal designs, to scientifically-engineered Reidel glassware, to unorthodoxly-shaped, but highly effective, Les Impitoyables. At the root of all this fuss is the simple idea that different wines require different amounts of space. Time and experience have proven that a fragrant Pinot Noir, for instance, benefits from a large, bulbous glass with a tapered opening at the top to allow the bouquet to collect in the bowl. In general, a clear, smooth-surfaced, stemmed glass has proven best. And although there are glasses made for virtually every style of wine, a set of medium-large, so-called Bordeaux-style or egg-shaped INAO (International Standard Organization) all-purpose glasses that hold about six ounces when two-thirds full is functional for most wines, with the exception of sparkling wines. A tall, tulip- or flute-shaped glass with a tapered body and relatively small opening best releases the bubbly charms of these wines.
GRASSY — Describes a wine with characteristic flavor and aroma resembling grass or herbs, particularly associated with Sauvignon Blanc.
GREEN — Describes wines made from unripe grapes, resulting in a raw, acidic taste. The color green is sometimes prevalent in young, white wines.