Have you heard of skin fermented white wine? If not, you’ve probably heard the terms orange, amber, romato or skin-contact wine. And guess what? All of these are the same - skin fermented white wines! There’s a lot of buzz and different terms being used for skin fermented whites, which can make them a bit intimidating. You may find yourself shying away from purchasing a bottle, ordering a glass on a menu or tasting at a winery. That’s why it’s easiest to just refer to these wines (orange, amber, romato) as skin fermented white wine, as this is essentially what they all are.
Orange, amber and romato wines are made from white wine grapes. The grape skins are left in contact with the juice to ferment (fermentation is the process that turns grape juice into alcohol). Hence, skin fermented white wine! The colour of the wine depends on the length in time the juice ferments with the skins, which can be hours to months. This is how you get skin fermented white wines that range in colour from bright orange to light yellow. This is also how you get a range in taste. The longer the juice stays in contact with the skins, the bigger and bolder the wine will be. Like with other wine categories, skin fermented white wines will vary in their flavours and characteristics.
Given all the variations with skin fermented white wine, where does one begin? Taste, taste and taste some more! Not so hard, right? A great place to start is with the Traynor Skin Fermented Whites mixed pack. You get three bottles of skin fermented white wines – Sparkling Vidal, Inclusion Orange and Skin Fermented Chardonnay. Each of these wines are distinctively different in taste and colour, so it’s a perfect introduction to the skin fermented white wine world.
As with all wine, there is a never ending amount information to learn. But, for now, this is everything you need to know about skin fermented white wine.
By Courtney Evans