TEARS OF WINE
We see them roll down the glass after taking a ship or swirling, they are called “legs” in England or “church windows” in Germany. The tears of wine are originated because alcohol evaporates faster than water and this produces a difference of density inside the glass.
They are in direct relation with the alcohol content of the wine we are tasting, mainly with the ethanol (ethyl alcohol ) that will provoque more or less persistent droplets and the glycerol, another type of alcohol that gives body and softness to wine.
When the “tears” are dense and they back down slowly they indicate that the wine is unctuous and with an important alcohol content.
As a general rule, as higher alcoholic strength more unctuous droplets will be caused, although this can be affected for instance if the glass of wine is dirty, has traces of detergent or if there is a significant difference of temperature between wine and glass.
Thus the “tears” of wine are a great value to take into consideration when tasting a wine, as they will indicate us the texture and density of our wine and they will approach us to its organoleptic properties.