Sometimes there’s nothing better than an excellent, sweet wine. If you’re not the biggest fan of a full-bodied, rich wine, sweet wines are always a refreshing and cheerful option.
A bottle of sweet wine is determined as a wine that retains more residual sugar from grapes during fermentation. The sweeter the wine, the more sugar residue is present within the wine. Residual sugar is the natural sugar that comes from grapes on the vine.
In general, the process of making wine has a lot of steps. To summarize, grapes are harvested, which are then crushed or pressed. Then, they are fermented.
Yeast plus sugar makes alcohol. The fermentation process creates yeast. The wine is then aged and then fine-tuned or filtered. After this, the wine is then bottled.
Sweet wine is made the same way, but winemakers may remove yeast, add extra sugar residue, or blend with a naturally sweet liquid for a wine to be sweet.
Everyone has a bit of a sweet tooth! So, if you’re in the market for a lovely wine to enjoy, look no further. Here, we have compiled a list of some of the most popular sweet wines available to buy in stores.
White zinfandel is one of the most popular varieties of sweet wine, and it was discovered by accident. Bob Trinchero of Napa Valley’s family estate used grape juice to perfect his white zinfandel wine to try and make it taste more full-bodied.
In actuality, the results were not as expected. It is produced as a sweet white wine that is almost clear with a pink tint.
Pacific Rim Sweet Riesling
This pacific rim sweet Riesling is a sweet white wine made using Riesling grapes from Germany.
Riesling grapes are one of the most common white grapes for wine and are aromatic and flowery flavored.
This wine is inexpensive and is popular among most wine drinkers because of its tropical and crisp taste. It is not too dry and is not too sweet either.
The pacific rim has hints of peach, pineapple, and honey with a bright and balanced finish perfect for casual drinking,
Ice wine is a unique wine that is made from frozen grapes. The grapes are left on the vine in cold temperatures until they freeze. The grapes are then gently pressed while they are still frozen.
Due to them being pressed when they are frozen, a concentrated and sugary liquid comes out. The juice is then fermented into wine. It is a rare wine and is extremely sweet due to the concentrated sugar squeezed out of the frozen grapes.
When available, it is a famous wine because of how easy it is to drink because it is so sweet.
Red Moscato is a popular sweet red wine with a jammy fruity flavor. It is widespread, and you can find it in most stores. The wine is typically light, fruity, and refreshing, popular amongst those who do not usually enjoy red wine.
The flavor of the wine emulates that of red berries and is typically a blend of muscat grapes and Shiraz or Zinfandel. Red Moscato is usually made from northern Italian red grapes, which give it a juicy and sweet flavor.
The wine pairs perfectly with fresh salads, soft cheese, and spicy meats.
Lambrusco Sweet Red (Riunite)
The reunite Lambrusco is a sweet, lightly sparkling red wine. The wine is made from Lambrusco salamino, Lambrusco marani and Lambrusco maestri grapes.
Lambrusco is known as a variety of grape grown in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy. Red Lambrusco pairs with most dishes and is an easy, inexpensive sweet wine. It is prevalent due to the price, and it has notes of strawberry and vanilla.
White Port is a fortified white wine from Portugal. There are different types of white port, some being dry and some being sweet. White grapes made to make dry white wines in the Portuguese region of Douro are used to make white port, too.
The grapes grow on high ground levels, and there are many different types of white grapes in the region used for white port. Most sweeter white ports are aged in oak barrels to give it extra sweetness and take away the tartness.
The sweetest white port may be known as lágrima and is popular for its sweetness and floral taste. The lágrima white port gets its name from the Portuguese term ‘tears’ as the high sugar content in the liquid can create tear-shaped shapes in the glass.
Red zinfandel is a top-rated, fruity wine with peachy and berry-like qualities. It is a famous wine for easy drinking and has a high alcohol content too.
This is because of the excess natural sugar from the grapes, which is present in the pre-fermented grapes. It is on the drier side as a sweet wine but has spiced plum and tobacco notes.
It is widely available in most stores and is a classic choice for a sweet glass of red.
Sherry is one of the sweetest wines and is light golden to rich copper. The dessert wine is specific to the Spanish region of Andalusia and has been produced by family-operated vineyards in this area since the eleventh century!
There are many different types of sherry, from cream sherry to medium sherry. They all differ in sweetness and are usually mixes of drier sherries such as ‘olorosos’ or ‘amontillado.’ Sweet sherry is simply dry sherry that has been sweetened.
There are many ways to sweeten dry sherry, for example, adding grape juice such as Pedro Ximenez or Moscatel wine.
Recioto Della Valpolicella
This sweet Italian wine is from the region near Verona, Italy, which is notable for its dry and rich Amarone wines. The drying process of the grapes is the same as the passitio process used to make Amarone.
The grapes are dried on surfaces to concentrate the sugar content. The fermentation process is then stopped before the sugars ferment entirely. The taste of this wine is deep, sweet, and smooth.
It has been said to taste like chocolate-covered cherries. This wine has 110-200g/L of residual sugar, making it an attractive, sweet choice!
Differences Between Dessert Wine And Normal Wine
Ice wine (Eiswein), port, and sherry can be determined as types of sweet dessert wines.
The main difference between dessert wines and regular (table) wine is the alcohol content. Generally, if a wine has a 14% alcohol percentage or less and is not sparkling, it is regarded as a bottle of regular wine.
If it has more than 14% alcohol content, is it considered a dessert wine because of the higher concentration of sugar when fermented. A dessert wine usually has a sweeter, fuller flavor and may be sweetened through fortification and naturally sweet.
Percentages determine the sweetness of a wine. If a wine is less than 1% in sweetness, it is regarded as a dry wine. 3% or more is regarded as a semi-sweet wine.
Any wine above 5% is considered to be a sweet wine, with dessert wines being categorized around 9% sweetness. 1% of sweetness is calculated equal to 10 g of residual sugar per liter of wine.
As we know, during the making of the wine, the sugars in the grapes become alcohol by fermentation. The more residual sugar from the fermentation process left in the wine after fermentation, the sweeter it is.
Sometimes, ordinary sugar and natural sweetener are added to the wine after the fermentation process, so this is not residual sugar from the grapes but added sugar.
Grapes always leave residual sugar, so it is rare for even the driest wine to have no sugar; dry wines usually have at least 1g residual sugar per liter.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Muscat The Same As Moscato Wine?
Moscato and muscat often become confused, but Moscato is just the Italian term for the muscat type of grape. However, don’t get these confused with muscatel, which is a grape of the muscat family, producing a fortified, light, and fruity wine.
What Is The Sweetest Grape For Wine?
There are endless varieties of sweet grapes for wine, with all of them having different qualities and producing other wines. Red zinfandel grapes are black-skinned and semi-sweet, making a rich, jammy red zinfandel wine.
The muscat grape is one of the sweetest too. Muscat grapes from Moscato have been cultivated for over 800 years. They are sweet and aromatic and have a distinct flavor. The muscat grape family has over 200 grape varieties, and the colors range from yellow to black.
Another sweet favorite is Pedro ximénez grapes. These are ultra-sweet and are grown in several Spanish regions, and they are used to produce sherry and sweet white wines. They have an intense and syrupy sweetness to them.
Overall, there are so many different sweet wines that are popular and available in most stores. Some of the most popular sweet wines available may be white and red zinfandel, sherry, and red Moscato. Sweet wines are easier to drink and are smoother on the taste buds.