What is Wine Astringency

Wine astringency is not a flavor but a mouth sensation prevalent in certain wines such as Petite Sirah or Cabernet Sauvignon. Astringency hits the back of the mouth causing dryness or puckering due to the wine’s tannins. Some people describe this as sour or bitter. The level of wine tannins is basically impacted by the grape structure and the amount of time the juice is in contact with the grape skins.

A wine’s tannin level can be impacted by several winemaking techniques such as initial grape processing procedures and amount of time the finished wine is aged before bottling. Another common way to manage wine astringency is a process called “fining.” This process involves adding an agent like an egg white solution to the wine that latch on to oppositely charged particles so they can be removed. At LDV Winery, we do not fine our red wines. The tannins are managed over time through our aging process resulting in a velvet, plush mouthfeel in our high tannic Petite Sirah and Syrah. We are striving for balance in the complexity of flavors and sensations of LDV wines. LDV Winemaker explains what wine astringency means in this brief video.