Weekly wine defined: Chewy

Brynn writes:

Last week I asked editor David Nelson to read our weekly wine pairing before it ran in Sunday’s Life Section. While reading about our recommended Gigondas wine for Ann Vogel’s “Vegged Out” Pumpkin and Black Bean Soup, David asked what the term “chewy” meant.

It’s a wine descriptor we use often when talking about wine, and it’s one that winemakers will use when describing their wines. But what does it mean? Obviously you’re not actually chewing something — can you imagine, you take a sip of wine and you’re left chewing bits and pieces o something? Eww!

So what does it mean? A wine that is described as “chewy” is a wine that is dense and has texture because of higher alcohol content. The higher alcohol means a wine has a high glycerol count — which one of the by-products of yeast fermentation. This high count leaves your mouth feeling full and almost like you want to chew what’s left lingering.