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Low Alcohol Wine: Good For Your Health

low alcohol wineAt the end of the day there is nothing better than winding down with a glass of wine. So let's look into low alcohol wine and see why it is good for your health.

If you have visited a wine bar or hotel, you might have noticed that the size of these glasses has increased by as much as 50 per cent in volume. So what, you might say, but this is a cause for concern.

It is obvious why this is happening - to boost sales and increase profits for businesses, possibly struggling in difficult times. The introduction of these large wine glasses, especially in pubs and wine bars, is no doubt great for business, but it's not great for your health.

I'm sure many consumers agree, and can't see what the fuss is about. While the contents of one bottle will fit into perhaps just four glasses instead of the usual six, are these producers and vendors swaying away from a moral responsibility? Some will say yes they are, others, absolutely not. This is where there is room for a low alcohol version.

As the glass size grows, the volume of wine obviously increases, which leads to a rise in the alcohol content volumetrically. You don't have to be clever to be aware that you will now be taking in more alcohol than before, your reactions will be slower. This is not a kill-joy attitude, but if you are the driver of a vehicle, you may not realize that you are over the legal limit for driving, as you have only had 'one glass'.

Being aware of the situation in the first place is key, and knowing more about which wines are more likely to be those high alcohol heavyweights, and from what countries to expect them from.

Global warming is happening, whether you agree or not, makes little difference. Grapes are getting riper quicker, and it can be a real dilemma for winegrowers as to when the crop should be harvested.

This is what they are faced with:

  • Picking the grapes too early (when [sugars = potential alcohol] are lower) will ensure a higher acid content, which will lead to an unbalanced wine that could be lack lustre and harsh. Often this is the preferred alternative provided the grapes are clean and ripe.
  • Harvest too late, and the winegrower could have good low acid levels, but very high sugars - which of course convert in to extremely high alcohols. Also, low acid means that the wine will not age as well.
  • Get it right - not always as easy as it sounds as the acid/sugar balance must be ideal for the style of wine being made. The weather may not be kind, (i.e. too much sun or rain; diseases may be prevalent). We don't want a flabby, blockbuster of a wine just as much as we don't want an acidic lightweight.
Each vintage is different, especially from a viticultural point of view, and that's what makes winemaking such an interesting art.

Remember, just because you may be faced with a low alcohol wine in the store or supermarket, does not mean that that it is inferior in any way, only it doesn't pack in the punch so much as to leave you legless after a few glasses.

Drinking in moderation of any strength of alcohol is the recommendation, and it is YOUR health you are aiming to look after, therefore low alcohol wine is good for your health.

To learn more, please visit Low Alcohol Wine where you will find plenty of interesting information.


EzineArticle Source: Low Alcohol Wine, Good For Your Health


Lower Alcohol Wines Are Worthy of Promotiontop of page

Many wine drinkers are now consuming more units of alcohol than ever before without realizing it, this is because of the rise in the number of higher alcohol wines being made. Weather patterns are changing dramatically, and this is undoubtedly having an affect on the ripening of grapes in hot countries which are renowned for the production of heavier styles of wine.

More sun means more natural sugar in the grapes, which in turn means more alcohol in the wine. But do we really need more alcohol in our wines? I don't think so, and here are my reasons why we should not right-off lower alcohol wines:

  1. White wines with an abv. (Alcohol by Volume) greater than 13% taste thick and heavy, almost cloying in the mouth - a lack of finesse. Also missing is that lighter refreshing taste that say a 10-11.5% white wine has. For example, if we taste a 13% abv. Chardonnay, this is what we are likely find:

    • A rich overpowering nose with little or no subtlety.

    • A lack of freshness or petillance (spritz or fizz), which is so desirable in an everyday white wine.

    • Ones palate would quickly tire of this sort of heavyweight style, so after a few glasses, the wine would appear dull and boring and lifeless with no zing or character.

  2. Higher alcohol red wines fare somewhat differently to whites. Although they lend themselves to having plenty of alcohol, occasionally made up to 15% abv., but going above 13.5% seems unnecessary. Again, the full, heaviness of the wine makes it less attractive against a similar wine made to 12% abv. or less. Even when accompanying a full-flavoured meat dish, the strength of alcohol is not always what is required. It is the balance of the fruit (the natural sugars from the grapes) with the acidity and/or tannin levels that is important.

  3. Evidence of excessive alcohol masks most other flavours to a certain degree. Being very ripe there should be plenty of aromas and flavours there in the first place so I say to winemakers all over, 'why hide them by making unattractive, heavyweight blockbusters?'

We really ought to reduce the alcohol content in our glasses, or at least be aware of it. And, more doesn't mean better when it comes to alcohol content in wine, unless you look at it from 'the more the merrier' aspect! Too much alcohol affects our overall wellbeing with many other health side effects as well. Reducing the volume of our alcohol intake is not always as easy as it sounds, especially to those who rely on it, and are unable to break a habit. But reducing the level of the alcohol within the volume goes some way towards addressing a problem.

Supermarkets are at last taking a longer look at how to promote these so-called niche style wines on their shelves. Traditionally wines are grouped by country of origin and colour, and not by not alcoholic strength. Perhaps now is a good time to turn the retailing of wines on its head and concentrate on abv. first to enable easy identification quickly rather than having to search through all the wines irrespective of alcohol content.

European regulations have so often hampered the growth of this market, however it is now legal sell wine that has had its abv. reduced by up to 2%. This reduction can be achieved by two specialist techniques, the "spinning cone" method and reverse osmosis. Learn more about these techniques by clicking on the Low Alcohol Wine link below.

For more about low alcohol wines, please visit Low Alcohol Wine where you will find some interesting information.


EzineArticle Source: Lower Alcohol Wines Worthy of Promotion


Low Alcohol Wine - A Trendy Alternative?top of page

Low alcohol wines used to be frowned at by most wine drinkers, especially wine snobs, but now, is a low alcohol wine a trendy alternative? The answer has to be yes, for several reasons. The sudden increase in interest in wines with a lower alcohol by volume (abv.) has perhaps been brought on by global warming as well as a few other factors.

I hear you say, how come? Well in the last 15 years some wines have increased by between 2% to 3% abv. which means that a red wine that may have been 13% abv. is now coming out at around 15% abv. This is a massive increase due to warmer weather enabling higher natural sugar levels. If these sugars are totally converted into alcohol to produce a bone dry wine then a blockbuster awaits - one or two glasses and you're on the floor!

To counteract very high sugar production, vineyards are producing grapes in high altitude, cool climate vinegrowing areas such as New Zealand, Chile and Argentina. Producers in Germany are also providing popular low alcohol versions of Rieslings to enable light summer white wine drinking styles to be made.

What about the health benefits?

It is well known that there are benefits to health from drinking wine in moderation, especially red wine. These benefits include:

  • The ability to lower cholesterol within the body reducing the risk of having blood clots.
  • Being a source of antioxidants, which are responsible for cleansing most of the human system.
  • Lower alcohol intake means fewer calories ingested - ideal for weight-watchers.

It should be noted that to make use of these wine benefits, a healthy lifestyle must be maintained.

However, while there are these proven health benefits, it is often overlooked that alcohol is not one of them. Alcohol impairs the liver and nervous system, and burdens the body with unnecessary calories which can lead to depression. It is these calories that can be avoided by consuming low alcohol wines.

Is there a future for low alcohol wine?

Most people would be happy to drink lower alcohol wines from certain varieties so long as they tasted the same as regular wines. The white wines would not be so full and flabby as with higher alcohols, but more crisp and delicate with attractive, light fruity citrus flavours.

Cool climate winegrowing is a way forward to producing fruit with less sugar and more acid, resulting in fresh, racy wines - ideal for summer drinking or as an accompaniment to fish, chicken and spicy foods. A red wine with 11.5% abv. would not appear so heavy as its 14% or 15% counterpart, but would be just as flavoursome and drinkable without that knockout punch!

Be sensible, drink wisely.

Over the years the size of the average wine glass has got bigger in order to accommodate keen customers - and sell more wine! Drinking a large glass of a high alcohol wine can be the same as consuming perhaps three glasses of a low alcohol wine. Not good for your health, let alone your pocket.

Maybe now a low alcohol wine really is a trendy alternative as well as being better for your health. By cutting down on the alcohol, you would be reducing your calorie intake quite dramatically, so why not give it a go.

Wine is a fascinating subject, the more you know, the more you want to find out. Learn how to taste and appreciate wine from a professional, and much more from this beginners guide to Understanding Wine. Also, discover how to pair wines and food successfully.

What have global warming and low alcohol wine have in common? Visit and see.


EzineArticle Source: Low Alcohol Wine - A Trendy Alternative?

All Articles By Rob Hemphilltop of page