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The Language of Wine

A story inside every bottle

By Dana StewartPublished 9 months ago Updated 9 months ago 6 min read
Top Story - July 2023
Created with Midjourney Imagine AI

'A bottle of wine contains more philosophy than all the books in the world' – Louis Pasteur

In every corner market, small town grocer or convenience store a museum is hidden in plain sight. The best works of art wait to be discovered, tasted and enjoyed.

Tasted? Art? You bet. Where can you find this secret oasis, dripping with philosophy and creative genius?

Look no further than the wine aisle.

Wine, with all its paranormal powers weaves a heady spell. Magic in a bottle. Maybe that's a bit of a stretch but if you're a wine lover, you know exactly how addictive wine really is. Wine possesses the ability to tell a story to those that will truly listen to what it has to say. Whether you choose a red or white wine, (champagne is also considered wine!) eloquent sips convey an emotion like no other beverage. Whisperings of the vineyard where the grape ripened to harvest on Midsommer's Eve. Maybe that fruity sensation that nibbles on your tongue heightens your senses and you understand the winemaker's secrets?

Uncork a bottle to unravel an unique tale. Can you actually taste the soil where the grapevine was planted? As we explore the language of wine, we'll uncover a hidden world - exquisitely complex, emotional - and swimming in nuance.

Created with Midjourney Imagine AI

While wine cannot actually speak with sentences and words in the conventional sense, it definitely has something to say. We only have to be patient and listen. Not with our ears, but with our hearts and taste buds. The translation of wine can take a lifetime to master, however once you immerse yourself with the vocabulary of wine, you begin an epic journey to be fluent in its love language.

Wine making is art. In every aspect.

Created with Midjourney Imagine AI

Wine is the only artwork you can drink” – Luis Fernando Oliverri

There are ten thousand varieties of grapes used to make wine. Red or white grapes, some are native and others are a type of mixed root or hybrid. Every winemaker has their tried-and-true favorite kind of grape to ferment. Some recipes have been tweaked and changed over the years, the end product a result of time and doting perseverance, perfected in generations.

In every bottle of wine, an artesian vision has come to life. The winemaker's craftsmanship has definitive qualities, born of a combination of intuition and experience. Just like the painter prepares their canvas, or a writer takes up pen and opens a journal, the winemaker lovingly nurtures their harvest into the art of liquid poetry. Here's what poet Percy Shelley wrote about wine in 'The Vine Shroud'

Flourishing vine, whose kindling clusters glow

Beneath the autumnal sun, none taste of thee;

For thou dost shroud a ruin, and below

The rotting bones of dead antiquity.

The Shelley Memorial at University College, Oxford. - also seen in the movie 'The Saint' Image from Wikipedia

There are so many kinds of wine, the list of options is truly endless. I decided the best way to explore this article was to conduct extensive research. In the name of art! I have made these sacrifices so you, dear reader, can understand how universally intoxicating wine truly is. Beyond including my tasting notes, I categorized each wine blend to a literary genre (or subgenre) that I think best explains what to expect flavor wise. Here they are, in order of personal preference.

Merlot - seductive with hints of black cherry, raspberry and plum. With a complex and earthy taste - merlot is the perfect choice for Romance.

Pinot Noir - similar to its Merlot cousin, you'll find red fruity tastes, but also vanilla and baking spices if it's been aged in oak. With the extra layers of flavor, I'll classify my glass of Pinot as Mystery.

Syrah - intense flavors, of unexpected mixtures of plum and tobacco, no better choice for Fantasy.

Sauvignon Blanc - Pungent, exotic and tart, the taste really bites your tongue, so I'm going to pair this one with Science Fiction.

Chardonnay - smooth and fruity, with hints of caramel (how the hell does a grape taste like caramel?) leaves me no choice but to label this variety as a Suspenseful Thriller.

Did I overshare my likes and dislikes? What does your favorite bottle of wine say about you? The winemakers want to know.

E. & J. Gallo Winery (Ernest and Julio Gallo) commissioned a survey of 2,000 adult, active wine drinkers in March of 2023. The survey was focused on adults who drink wine regularly and looked at the personality differences based on respondents’ favorite style of wine. The data found that those who enjoy red wine said they’re introverts (48%), while respondents who enjoy sparkling wine, are the most likely to be outgoing, identifying as extroverts (40%).

Talk about a valuable insight on date night.

SWNS Digital put together this informative graphic to further demonstrate preferences.,be%20outgoing%2C%20identifying%20as%20extroverts%20(

What's interesting about this is that I do generally prefer a glass of red wine. In line with this research, I am a dog lover (and owner) love the outdoors and I would classify myself as a creative. However, I am not an early riser, and I would definitely define myself as an extrovert. Perhaps wine holds some secrets of its own? Sagittarius was not included in these stats so I have no idea where I stand, astronomically speaking. Sidenote: notice that 47% of respondents in this survey replied that writing is a creative outlet, while 36% of those surveyed said drawing was their preferred form of creativity. That's a whopping 83% total (in this sample size) of creatives that are wine drinkers.

Wine is big business. Once winemakers harvest the grapes the real fun begins with the aging and fermentation process. Next comes the art of presentation for the product that's been so lovingly nurtured. Also known as the wine bottle.

The marketing for each blend of wine truly has no limits. Winemakers pay big money to have their product introduced in a manner that aligns with their vision, that speaks to the consumer in an evocative manner.

Enter the art engineer. I met Brad Canfield through a mutual friend of mine, and this title is exactly what he is. Once based in Saint Helena, the heart of Napa Valley, Brad works full time and freelances with wineries and designs bottle art. I asked him what he likes most about his career. Brad said, and I quote 'Wine is a remarkable industry full of very passionate and creative people. Wine is art at every level. From the farm to the lips, it's beautiful.'

Here's one of Brad's latest wine bottle designs for Sklar Wines located on the North Fork of Long Island New York. Their first release is a Rosé and a Chardonnay.

I'm sure you'll be able to find it in your convenience store museum later this summer.

Photo courtesy of Brad Canfield
By D A V I D S O N L U N A on Unsplash

Author's notes: This article was inspired by playing around creating Midjourney AI photos, while drinking wine of course.


Created with Midjourney Imagine AI


About the Creator

Dana Stewart

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Comments (27)

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  • Samira7 months ago

    Great work! Fantastic writing 🤘

  • R.S. Colorado 8 months ago

    Always love a good cup of wine especially with a good read such as this 👏👏👏

  • Veronica Coldiron9 months ago

    Dana, I have had a love affair with wine since I was too young to be drinking it, an still learned a lot from this! LOL! My first win was a muscadine variety, homemade, super sweet and "quirky". I didn't see that in this, but that's cool by me since ours was homegrown and I've never seen it marketed. 😂 This was fun to read and I LOVE that I learned so much from it. GREAT article and congrats on the top story. WELL deserved!

  • Novel Allen9 months ago

    What a lovely story of wine.I love the artisitic bottles. I dont like sweet wine, just a hint of somewhere in between is fine with me. Great insight into the many many varieties. Astounding.

  • Estherlyn Tyson9 months ago

    Great Article! i love wine especially Red.

  • I never understand why Capricorn almost never mention in any astrology fact or cap? Like, why? and what if there is a person that like white and red both equally? Or maybe they drink one type of wine because...some reason? Anyway, well written artilce! Thank you for sharing!

  • Great job...I like a few others, am not much of a drinker. Mixed and fruity if I do. congrats!!

  • Congratulations on your Top Story😉💯🎉

  • Jazzy 9 months ago

    As if I needed another reason to love wine! You should check out the book, "Girly Drinks" I feel you'd LOVE IT! Great TS!!!

  • Gerald Holmes9 months ago

    Well done, Dana. I also Like a good red wine. I have discovered over my many years on this earth, that good wine has nothing to do with price. I love that you did not try to preach or talk down to us in your story. Very well written and "flows like fine wine."

  • Whoaaaaa, ten thousand varieties of grapes?! That's freaking a lot! Also, I never thought of wine making as an art. So fascinating! Thank you so much for all your sacrifices, lol! Congratulations on your Top Story!

  • Gina C.9 months ago

    Amazing, amazing piece, Dana!! Wine truly fascinates me. Admittedly, I'm not much of a drinker (I'm a total light weight) but my family is Italian and I've grown up around wine my entire life 😅 I like both white and reds. However, most reds gives me headaches because of the tannins and so the only ones I can really drink are chiantis and pinot noirs :) Anyway, talk about artwork - your writing is art for sure! This was tied together so beautifully, and the stats were such an interesting touch! Congrats on a very well deserved top story!!

  • C. H. Richard9 months ago

    Loved this my friend 🍷♥️ I am a merlot/red wine drinker all the way though I will have a glass of pinot once in awhile. I'm not sure about the introvert/extrovert survey although I always think I'm bit of both anyways. One thing I would say about drinking wine is that you dont know you have been drinking bad wine until you have a glass of great wine. That being said i am still on a budget and will buy a brand that is still good but not really good. Love the art of your friend and will look for that bottle. Loved the pairings too but would have to say romance is more challenging for me to write unless I can add it to a thriller or horror piece - lol. Very cool story and I am going to have a glass of merlot right now

  • Tiffany Gordon 9 months ago

    Interesting topic & findings! Congrats on your TOP STORY!

  • Naomi Gold9 months ago

    Dana, this is my favorite thing you’ve written—which is saying a lot! You keep outdoing yourself. Your way with words is as intoxicating as wine. I’ve actually been wanting to write about this myself. I used to only drink sweet Riesling from Germany, haha. That was in my 20’s, when I wanted to get White(ish) Girl Wasted. Now in my 40’s, my tastes have changed, and sweet wine grosses me out. So I’ve been slowly exploring reds, based on staff recommendations at my favorite fancy liquor store, and a lot of Googling. I feel so grown up! Gone are the days of cheap wine with twist off caps. I have a wine bottle opener, and a wine stopper with a pump. Damn it if that’s not adulting. Also, I’m in the process of converting to Judaism, and I’ve been celebrating Shabbat, which includes wine. There is something very spiritual about wine. I feel it. Of course, some people are just looking to get drunk, like me in my 20’s. But I’m not surprised wine enthusiasts are creative. Shabbat has taught me how to deeply relax for 24 hours straight each weekend, recharging. It has helped my writing and art immensely (I do both). The data is interesting. I’m an introvert (INFP), early riser, and outdoor person who prefers red… but also prefer cats. I loved your book genre pairings! I’m a big fan of Chianti and transgressive or dark literary fiction. Congrats on an amazing Top Story! 🍷

  • Brin J.9 months ago

    Oh, the language of wine. You have spoken it well. I love the deep and richness of your words and the poetry within your prose. It makes me want to pour a glass. And as I sit here, thinking of the way you shifted my perspective on the very idea of the intoxicating liquid, I'm reminded of the stories about the Gods having their drink of ambrosia, and how we mortals experience our own sweet nectar in wine.🍷

  • Heather Hubler9 months ago

    Woohoo!!! So glad to be back here wishing you congratulations on Top Story for this awesome piece!!

  • Kendall Defoe 9 months ago

    I have found a very large and comprehensive guide to wine in a book box - I love Montréal - and have only casually glanced at it. Now, I want to read the entire thing and thank you for it. The grape juice is not really doing it for me now. ;)

  • Cathy holmes9 months ago

    Great article. I'm not much of a wine drinker, but when I do, I prefer white or rose. Congrats on the TS

  • Dana Crandell9 months ago

    Wonderful write up on a complex subject, Dana! Give me a nice, rich Merlot. Pam is all about Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio. We also brew a batch of our own fruit wines occasionally. My favorite so far has been blackberry/mulberry, with mulberries from a huge tree in a friend's yard.

  • Caroline Jane9 months ago

    I BLOODY LOVE THIS!!!! Yes. Yes. YES!! Every book should come with a wine pairing!! Sharing to my insta account. This is on the nose. You are on to something with this!! Love, love, love it (not sure i have said that enough 🤣)❤❤❤

  • Heather Hubler9 months ago

    This was fantastic, Dana!!! You never cease to amaze me with your endless versatility!! I loved everything about this. I prefer white in most cases and do like to be indoors and am a night owl :) Great work, my friend! I hope this gets Top Story!!

  • Donna Renee9 months ago

    That was so fascinating, Dana! Hmmm well, I’m a dog loving, outdoorsy, early rising, creative, red wine drinker haha

  • Lamar Wiggins9 months ago

    Excellent thoughts and research. I choose red whenever I indulge. I love a bold cab, or a peppery Chianti. Not a huge fan of white because it’s usually too sweet. But if I had to drink one it would def be a Sauvignon blanc, they tend to be dryer with more flavor to me. Once again, great article, Dana… cheers!!!

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