Decoding a Wine Bottle - Years

NV, V. AVA? What do these abbreviations mean on a wine label? Here's the quick explanation:

The "NV" stands for "Non-Vintage" and it means that the wine is made with a blend of grapes from two or three different years.

"V." followed by a year means that the wine is made with a certain percentage (usually 75-85%) of grapes from that year. Each country has it's own standards for the percentage of grapes used from that specific year in order to say that it is "Vintage."

Wines marked "AVA" come from Napa Valley and are held to higher standards - 95% or more of grapes harvested that year.

The information above is generally found on wine produced in the United States, keep in mind that each country may have their own word for each. It might be time to pop open this 2005 Cosecha (Vintage) from Spain. We will let you know how it was!

Here's the long version if you are interested in how to decode a wine bottle even further.


By Tannins and Tatas
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