Currency and Delivery Country

We're just loading our login box for you, hang on!

Sweet Wine

Sweet wines, often reserved for desserts or sipping on special occasions, are a diverse category in the wine world. Among the plethora of sweet wine types, three styles in particular — botrytised, late harvest, and ice wines — stand out due to their unique production methods and distinct flavour profiles. Understanding these can offer a deeper appreciation for the intricate dance of nature and human intervention in winemaking.

Botrytised Wines: These wines owe their distinct character to a rather unusual hero: the Botrytis cinerea fungus, often called "noble rot." This fungus attacks grapes, drawing out water while concentrating the sugars and flavours within. The result is a wine rich in sweetness with an unparalleled depth of flavour. Sauternes from Bordeaux and Tokaji Aszú from Hungary are famed examples. A hallmark of botrytised wines is their complex taste profile, characterised by honey, dried fruits, and often a unique musky note.

Late Harvest Wines: As the name suggests, these wines are produced from grapes that are left on the vine longer than usual. This extended ripening period allows the grapes to develop higher sugar content. The resulting wines are sweet but not always as intensely so as botrytised or ice wines. Their flavour spectrum can range widely, from stone fruits to tropical notes, depending on the grape variety and region. Late harvest wines can be made from various grape varieties, with Riesling being particularly popular for this style, especially in regions like Alsace and parts of Germany.

Ice Wines: A product of the vineyard's frigid embrace, ice wines are made from grapes that have naturally frozen on the vine. These frozen grapes are then pressed, leading to the extraction of a concentrated sweet juice, while the ice remains behind. This method produces a wine with pronounced sweetness balanced by vibrant acidity. Notably, for a wine to be classified as an ice wine, the freezing must happen naturally. Canada's Niagara Peninsula and Germany are renowned for their ice wines, often made from Riesling or Vidal grapes. These wines exhibit luscious notes of peach, apricot, and honey, with a crisp finish that prevents them from being overly cloying.

In conclusion, while all three wines – botrytised, late harvest, and ice wines – fall under the sweet wine umbrella, they are profoundly different in their production, taste, and the stories they tell of nature's role in winemaking. Botrytised wines speak of the unexpected beauty arising from fungal intervention, late harvest wines narrate tales of patience and prolonged ripening, while ice wines are a testament to nature's icy touch and its role in creating concentrated sweetness. Together, they showcase the varied tapestry of sweet wines, each with its own allure and narrative.

Read more
Shop Other Styles
See More
Sort by
Advanced search
Age in years
Bottling year
Alcohol by volume
Distilleries & brands
User rating
Bottle size
Showing 1 - 12 out of 12
Sort by