Wine tasting: What exactly are wine legs and what do they mean?

If you have ever been wine tasting, you’ll have probably heard someone mention wine legs.

In this blog, we’ll take a closer look at this rather strange-sounding phenomenon and discover what it actually tells us about the wine that we’re tasting.

What are wine legs?

Also known as “tears of wine” in France, wine legs are the streaks of wine that form on the side of your wine glass when you swirl the wine.

They happen because the alcohol in the wine on the side of your glass evaporates, leaving behind the liquid, which falls back into your glass.

Note that it’s not possible to create legs inside a closed bottle of wine, as no evaporation can occur in this environment.

Try putting your hand over your glass of wine and see if it makes any difference to the legs.

Interestingly, the same wine can also have different legs, depending on how warm or humid the place is where you are tasting the wine.

If you’re interested in more of the science behind this, take a look at NASA’s website (yes, you read that right – NASA!).

What do wine legs mean about the wine you are tasting?

In all honesty, not a lot. It was once thought (and indeed is still kind of a wine urban myth) that looking at a wine’s legs could tell you something about the quality of the wine you were drinking.

This is simply not true.

What wine legs actually tell us, is how much alcohol there is in the wine. So, if you have lots of “legs” running down the side of your glass of wine when you give it a swirl, it’s a good indication that the wine you are tasting is on the higher side when it comes to alcohol content.

Additionally, the “legs” from a sweeter wine will tend to run more slowly down the side of your glass.

In short, wine legs indicate alcohol content and/or how sweet a wine is likely to taste. Nothing more.

Can I guess the alcohol content of the wine by looking at the legs?

It is possible to take a rough guess at the alcohol content of a wine, by looking at the legs or tears on the side of your wine glass.

Some experts say that they can even tell if a wine’s alcohol content has been marked incorrectly on the bottle, by looking at its legs.

Find out more about wine tasting

If you’re new to the world of wine, why not take a look at our Ultimate Guide to Tasting French Wine?

Plus, you can take a tour with us around the Vineyards of Châteaumeillant, a Loire Valley AOC and one of France’s best-kept secrets.

The 5 best foods to eat with Gamay wine

One of the three grape varieties used to make wine in Châteaumeillant, a Loire Valley AOC, Gamay is famed for creating wonderfully light-to-medium bodied red wines with a beautiful purple hue and glorious floral and fruity aromas and flavours. This, together with its natural acidity, makes Gamay a really versatile wine, which can be paired with a surprisingly wide variety of foods.

In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the best foods to enjoy Gamay wines with:

1. Fish and seafood

Normally, when we want a wine that goes with fish, we automatically reach for a bottle of white.

However, because of its high acidity, Gamay is the perfect wine partner to contrast with an oily fish such as salmon or tuna.

Indeed, it goes really well with a whole range of seafood, including lobster and mussels.

So next time you fancy a fish supper, swap your usual white wine for a glass of Gamay (ideally from Châteaumeillant, of course!). We promise you won’t be disappointed.

2. Charcuterie

Gamay also goes really well with fatty or salty meats, such as those found on a charcuterie platter.

It also tastes marvellous with cold leftovers from your Christmas dinner – you heard it here first!

3. Cheese

A lovely fruity Gamay is the perfect partner for a wonderfully creamy cheese. Think an oozing Brie or even a Saint-Nectaire.

It is also delicious with the local goat’s cheese. Coincidence? We think not.

4. Enjoy Gamay as an aperitif

If you’re looking for a red that would work well as an aperitif before your meal, Gamay is perfect. Its low tannins and high acidity mean that it is easily drinkable on its own or with a range of different nibbles for your apéro

Plus, it’s so versatile, that you could even carry it on through the starter and into the main course, if you wished!

5. Our picnic wine of choice

Due to its amazing ability to go well with a really wide variety of foods, including cold meats, cheese and even strawberries, Gamay has to be our picnic wine of choice.

So next time you’re on the lookout for a bottle of wine to take on a romantic picnic lunch, why not try a Gamay?

Tasting wine on a wine tour around Châteaumeillant

If we have whet your appetite, why not book your Vineyard Tour around Châteaumeillant, a Loire Valley AOC and one of France’s best-kept secrets? We look forward to showing you around!

Want to learn the secrets of how to taste wine before you head out on your tour? Take a quick peek at our Ultimate Guide to Tasting French Wine.

Chateaumeillant wine tours, wine tours Chateaumeillant, Loire Valley wine

How to make the most of your wine tour

So you’ve decided that the best way to discover the local wine is to take a guided tour around the vineyards.

Not only will you get the opportunity to taste the wine, but you will also see where and how the vines are grown, discover why the local terroir is so special, learn how the wine is produced and find out where the bottles are stored.

But before you head out on your voyage of discovery (aka wine tour), take a quick look at our tips to help you make the most of your wine tour around Châteaumeillant (or indeed any AOC in the Loire Valley or beyond!).

It may be warm outside but don’t forget to bring layers…

On a beautiful summer’s day (plus spring and autumn in Central France’s continental climate), there’s nothing better than taking a stroll through the vines and soaking up the sun.

But to truly see the full wine-making process from start to finish, a wine tour will also generally involve going inside to areas which are not so warm, such as where the wine is made and stored.

That means that it’s a good idea to take a cardigan or jumper with you on your tour, so you don’t get too chilly.

Take a look at our ultimate guide to tasting French wine

This is by no means a must, but if you are heading out on a wine tour around the Loire Valley, you may want to learn a little bit more about wine tasting, so that you can make the most of your wine tour.

As we mentioned in the guide, we think wine tasting is a very personal experience and anyone who tells you that you aren’t doing it ‘right’, is just plain wrong.

Filled with fun facts and interesting snippets, our guide to tasting French wine has been designed to enhance your enjoyment of your wine tour.

Relax and enjoy your wine tour

It is possible to organise your own visits to local vineyards, but one of the advantages of a guided wine tour, is that all of the hard work is done for you.

Your knowledgable guide will take you to all the best places and share the secrets of what makes Châteaumeillant wine so special, so you can just relax and have fun.

Plus, if you prefer to drink the wine you are tasting rather than spitting it out, a guided wine tour removes the need for a designated driver, as your guide can pick you up from where you’re staying.

If we have whet your appetite, why not book your Vineyard Tour around Châteaumeillant, a Loire Valley AOC and one of France’s best kept secrets? If you want to experience more of Le Berry’s delicious produce, why not book a Cheese and Wine Tour. We look forward to showing you around!

Visiting the area? Take a look at this…

If you are visiting Le Berry, you might find this feature about the Indre department in Living France magazine useful!

Although Châteaumeillant town itself is actually in the department next door (the Cher), there are a few vineyards from this AOC located at the edge of the Indre.

If this has whet your appetite and you are planning to visit the area, why not book a wine tour and tasting experience with us?

Living France, Indre France, wine tours, wine tasting, France

Article shared courtesy of Living France magazine


Chateaumeillant Wine Tours and Tastings, Centre Loire Valley wines

3 advantages of a wine tour around Chateaumeillant

If you want to discover the local wine, you may be wondering whether to book a wine tour or go it alone.

While you are able to plan and book your own visits to vineyards, here are some of the advantages to booking a wine tour…

1. Someone else can do the research for you

If you go on a wine tour, the research has already been done for you, so you can just sit back, relax and enjoy the trip.

No need to ring up and schedule appointments at local vineyards or try to estimate how long each visit will take or how you will get there.

Your guide has already done all the research, to give you the best wine tour experience.

2. A wine tour means there is no need to worry about a designated driver

Drink driving is never a good idea. Of course, there is the option of spitting out your wine. But where is the fun in that?

Booking a wine tour around Chateaumeillant enables you to taste the delicious local wines and truly make the most of your trip.

3. Enjoy your wine tour with a guide who is passionate and knowledgeable about the local wine

A wine tour with a knowledgeable guide, who is passionate about the local wine, will really enhance your experience. Plus, you will get the inside knowledge and the amusing anecdotes that aren’t easy to find on Google.

If you fancy a wine tour around Chateaumeillant, why not book with us today?