Talking Healthy

Which Red Wine is Sweet?

Here’s the thing…

Wines can either be Dry or Sweet, it’s significantly stirred by the Acidity and Tannin components of the beverage. Tannin, also called “Polyphenols”, is a natural antioxidant produced from the grapes’ skin and seeds which causes the drying sensation on the tongue. On the other hand, Acidity is the sour and tart taste that neutralizes the level of sweetness and also helps in preserving the wine.

For the time being, there is still no absolute definition of how to differentiate one from the other. It’s more of a personal appraisal as to how one describes sweetness; As matter of fact, in between dry and sweet are “semi-sweet”, “medium sweet”, “off dry”, “very dry”, etc.

What makes it sweet?

Basically, the “residual sugar” or the amount of sugar retained after the fermentation of the grapes is the main agent that makes a wine tastes sweet. Some enthusiasts say that Medium Sweet to Sweet wines contain over 45 grams of sugar per Litre (g/L). (Note: “Fruity” flavor is not equivalent to sweet, instead it’s the natural “dessert” flavor of the fruit.)


PORT or “Vinho do Porto

 a fortified wine that originated from the Douro Valley in Northern Portugal and has high alcohol content (19 – 20%).

RED MOSCATO or “Muscat Blanc

a light-bodied wine that is low in alcohol (5.5%) and has a unique floral aroma.

ZINFANDEL or “Primitivo

known to be an American wine that contains very high alcohol (45%) and acidity, but with moderate tannin.


a full-bodied wine that is believed to originate from the Sautemaic Region in Bordeaux, France.

VIN SANTO or “Holy Wine

originally from Tuscany, Italy, it contains high alcohol level (16%) but commonly has 27% g/L.


a wine from the Italian Provinces of Modena, Reggio-Emilia, Mantua. It is high in acidity and with an alcohol level of 8%.

TROLLINGER or “Schiava/Vernatsch

both a German and Italian wine with low tannin and a minimum of 10.5% alcohol content. Its name, which suggests “slave”, is based from the method that is used to produce the grapes wherein it is forces the fruit to produce less leaves.

Support Organic Wine Brands

Now you have the idea what to look for on wine labels (you’re welcome!)…

What comes next, that is equally important, is to be aware which brand is organic.

An “Organic Wine” is produced in accordance with the principles of natural farming or in simpler terms, production without the use of artificial and chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and alike.

The Challenge

Wines need preservatives to last longer, and presently, only “non-organic” compounds are available particularly Sulphur Dioxide or Sulphites. Hence, countries have differing criteria and legal definition as to how a wine is to be certified as organic. For instance, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) provides organic certification if its Sulphite level is less than 20 parts per million. While, the Government of the United Kingdom bases it on how the grapes were produced regardless of the non-organic preservatives added to the product.

What’s the gist?

Choosing a wine is an intimate experience wherein one’s taste and preferences must be highly considered. Although, it is encouraged to patronize organic wines because it is healthier, at the same time, organic farms employ more workers which means more opportunities and support to farmers and their families.

Suggested Organic and Sweet Red Wines:

Alcohol: 15% / Price: 16 to 20 USD

Alcohol: 15.6% Price: 15 to 20 USD

Alcohol: 20% Price: 24 to 28 USD

Alcohol: 13.5% Price: 12 to 16 USD

Alcohol: 14.5% Price: 9 to 12 USD

They say drinking wine regularly is an elixir against aging-associated diseases, and of course, an antidote to everyday stress.


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