Definition - What does Blending mean?

Blending is the process in which different varietals of wine are mixed together to produce a balanced wine. Typically, a base varietal is chosen and then other varietals are considered in varying percentages to balance out the base wine. Considerations for certain varietals are determined based on the style of wine the winemaker or vintner desires.

WineFrog explains Blending

Following the final stages of the winemaking process, winemakers have the task of blending their wine. This is the stage by which a certain varietal of wine is chosen as a base and other varietals are added. The blending process is a means to balancing a wine. The base wine determines specific characteristics that the wine will begin with and will influence the characteristics of added wines until the final wine is as the vintner expects, with the specific characteristics married together.

Some varietals, for instance Cabernet Sauvignon, are known for having a high tannin content. The tannin in these wines can be softened with the addition of less tannic wines such as Malbec. This varietal also adds a fruitier character to the savory notes of Cabernet Sauvignon. Merlot may also be added for earthiness and so forth.

Blending is the stage during winemaking which requires an experienced palate and patience, as sometimes, only very small percentages of certain wines are mixed together. After which, a tasting panel is held to determine the most balanced blend.

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