A wine with a default is not something that you don’t like about it, too sweet, too fruity, too tannic…these are not what we call a default but just a question of personal taste. As we said earlier, a wine can have the flavours or lemon, brioché, coconut, spice, pepper bell, fennel, jasmin, barnyard, leather, game and so on. due to the holly fermentation the grape aromas are transforming into the wine aromas. Amen.
Expected the reduction aromas (Barnyard, matches, sulfite…) that disappear with just some oxygenation or aeration (Decanter, Carafe) the aromas that should ring your bell are those which remind you of your nephew’s nappy, the cow poo, the rotten egg, the nail varnish (except if your cousin is close by), the geranium flower even on Toussaint day and obviously the classic corky one which smells of dusty, damp cardboard. Oooh I almost forgot the very trendy Mikey mouse flavour, thanks to the raw wine movement, which in the best case could remind you of a saucisson, is maybe time for you to find a new delicatessen…
Those aromas could come from the Brettanomyces, a strain of yeast which are not suitable for wine (but very indicate for the Belgium Lambic beer) and that able to contamine a winery. The cork aromas is coming from Tri-Chloro-Anisoles (TCA) mol that come from the cork, the barrel but also the wood used to transport the wine in bulk. Mikey mouse is usually found in bottle of wine with very little sulfite, or no added sulfite.
So how to spot a default in your wine ? Easy, default are increasing with time, just poor a glass of wine and wait for 20 minutes. If it’s a default, the wine aromas would have disappear in favour of the default aromas.
Let’s play the game, When should you throw away the wine and when should you just make it breathe ?