Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, but you can call me Vinny. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the fine points of etiquette to the science of winemaking. And don't worry, I'm no wine snob—you can also ask me those "dumb questions" you're too embarrased to ask your wine geek friends! I hope you find my answers educational, empowering and even amusing. And don't forget to check out my most asked questions and my full archives for all my Q&A classics.
Dear Dr. Vinny,
Like food labels, are tasting notes listed in order of prominence?
—Nelson, Dana Point, Calif.
The short answer is no. Hopefully by reading the entire tasting note you’ll get a sense of what the author found to be the dominant notes. Or, if the flavors and aromas are in perfect balance, that should be communicated as well.
Some wines have a lot of power and inspire a whole list of smells and tastes, other wines might be more restrained and the structure or texture of the wine is more noteworthy. Some wines have a more dramatic attack, others have a more memorable finish. In any case, the tasting note should give you an idea of the experience of the wine—but not in descending order of dominance.