Wines and Spirits Terminology: Letter U

U.S.S.R.

A vast range and huge quantity of wine is made in the south of the Soviet Union. This country actually ranks fifth in the statistics of world wine production. These wines are seldom seen outside their homeland and, as many are produced from hybrid vines, it is difficult to be very enthusiastic about their possible quality or their prospects as competitors with other classic wines. The Russian taste tends towards sweet wines, but a number of dry whites are also made and have been praised by tourists. They are all, as might be expected, produced by large concerns and there seem to be no specific estates. Labels naturally present problems to those who cannot make out the script, but often wines are simply given the name of their type and, possibly, a number to differentiate them from others in the same range. Sparkling wines, referred to as ‘Champagne’, are very popular in the Soviet Union and are being produced in increasing amounts.

Uerzig, Urzig

(Pronounced ‘Ert-zig’) Middle Mosel parish producing fine wines.

Ugni Blanc

White grape,which is also known as the Saint Emilion in the Charente, where it is used for Cognac. It is cultivated quite extensively in parts of southern France and is the Trebbiano Toscano of Italy.

Uiterwyk

(Pronounced ‘Outer-veek’) Stellenbosch estate in South Africa. Under vines since the 17th century. It makes a range of wines, of which the red appear to have been the most successful as regards quality.

Uitkyk

(Pronounced ‘Ate-cake’) Estate at the Cape, South Africa, on the edge of both the Stellenbosch and Paarl regions. The name means ‘Outlook’ because of the wonderful views from the property. The particularly elegant house, built in 1788, is thought to have been originally designed as a Cape Town mansion – the plans possibly were purloined – by the French architect, Thibault. The estate does not seem to have concentrated on wine production until the late 19th century, but since then the reputation of its wines has increased. The present winemaker, son-in-law of the owner, hasextended the range making both red and white wines, many of them of noted quality.

Ullage

The space in either a bottle or cask of wine between the level of the wine and the closure of the container – ie. that occupied by air. A wine described as ‘much ullaged’ will show, in bottle, a big gap between the level of the wine and the cork. A wine ‘on ullage’ in cask may simply be resting on its lees. The ullage in the bottled wine may give pause to some prospective tasters, but it need not mean that the wine is bad or in any way inferior, although it could indicate that the wine will show signs of age. A wine in wood ‘on ullage’ may simply be waiting to be racked or bottled; the expression indicates its current state.

Umbria

Wine region of Italy, of which the most famous wines are those of Orvieto. Others are those of Torgiano and the Colli del Trasimene (the Trasimene Hills).

Underberg

These tonic bitters, used also as an aperitif and digestive, have been made in Germany for over a century. They are put up in single nip portions.

Uruguay

All types of wines and spirits are made in this country but they are seldom exported, even to nearby countries, so that travellers should take the opportunity of trying them on the spot.

Usquebaugh

In Gaelic ‘the water of life’ or whisky.

Utiel-Requena

This Spanish region, in the west of Valencia, produces an enormous quantity of wine, fed and white, with some sweet or dry Hicoroso’ also made.

16. December 2011 by admin
Categories: Spirits, Uncategorized, Wine, Wine Dictionary | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Wines and Spirits Terminology: Letter U

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