It is not easy to find low-acid white wines. Winemakers strive to maintain acid levels, which is undoubtedly the most important component of a wine. Acidity gives wine structure and brightness. When pairing wines with food, acidity is also important. Acidic white wines can be a problem if you have acid reflux. What can we do? Do you have to give up wine? No! To help you avoid heartburn-triggering white wines, I have compiled a list of low-acid white wines. You might find the tartness of wines a bit too much for you.
Is wine acidic? Levels of PH
The short answer is yes. It depends on how acidic you define it. Let’s look at how acid is measured in wine.
Winemakers and chemists use the pH scale for acidity calculations. This is all you need to know. This scale is from zero to twelve. At 7., water is neutral. Water is neutral at 7.
The majority of wines range between 3-4. For context, lemon juice is 2 and coffee 5, respectively. Wines are, therefore, on the acidic end of the pH scale. You will be surprised to learn that white wines have more acid than red wines, particularly if they’re sweet.
How To Detect Acid In Wine
Perhaps you have a potentiometric meter spare? You should check next to the knives.
If you find it, calibrate it with the standard pH buffer solutions. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have it. You will know how winemakers measure acidity.
Don’t let this discourage you. Wine lovers can sense the acidity of wine by its taste, colour, and smell. Acidity is determined by how tart or sour the wine tastes. A puckering sensation indicates high acid. You may also feel your mouth watering.
Types Of Acids In Wine
There are four types of acid in wine. Tartaric acid is the dominant type and can be found in all grapes. Another type of acid found in green apples is malic acid. Then there is the lactic acid which you will find in yogurt. Citric acid, the dominant type of citrus acid, is also dominant, as its name implies. This does not mean that your wine contains green apples, yogurt or lemons, but that these are the predominant acid types in citrus foods. All four acids are present in wine but come in different concentrations.
Why Acid Is Important in Wine
The four acid types in wine affect its colour, taste and longevity. This is just a small part of the larger picture. Many other things are going on under the hood.
Winemaking is, as you might have noticed, a matter of wine chemistry. Knowing about wine chemistry is a great way to understand wine. Side note: You don’t have to be a good chemistry student in high school to become a winemaker. I am living proof.
Acid is one chemical component in wine. The winemaker is responsible for balancing, controlling, and converting acids. You will be able to make a better wine if you can manipulate these components. It can be viewed as science and art.
Winemakers, for example, use acid in wine to reduce the sulphur dioxide effect, which helps protect the wine from going rotten. They also determine how much malic acid is converted into lactic, which makes the wine more delicate and less tart. This is the essence of malolactic fermentation.
Veraison is another chemical process where acid plays a key role. Everything happens in the vineyard before harvest. The sugar level rises as the grapes mature and increase in size. This causes the acid levels to drop. The winemaker can choose the stage at which to harvest grapes based on their preferred acid level.
List White Wines with Low Acid
Here’s the list of low-acid white wines you can now try.
Chardonnay is a popular white wine with a medium body. It has a clean, crisp taste. The best thing about Chardonnay is that it has lower acid. This is especially true if it has been through malolactic ferment. The harsh malic acid is converted into the more delicate lactic acid. Chardonnay grown in warmer areas of California or Australia should be preferred.
Gewurztraminer has a strong aroma and is difficult to spell. It tastes like pineapple, apricots, and lychee fruits when tinned with copper. Gewurztraminer has the lowest acid white wine that I have ever tasted. Alsatian Gewurztraminer can sometimes sneak into the medium range, but German Gewurztraminer stays low.
This white wine with low acidity, also known as white Grenache, deserves more attention. While Grenache Blanc is the most well-known of the two cousins, it’s worth trying Grenache Blanc.