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Acidity in Wines 1--Acids and Wine

        Acids give wines their characteristic crisp, slightly tart taste. Alcohol, sugars, minerals, and other components moderate the sourness of acids and give wines balance. Some acids are naturally present in the base ingredients of wines, while others are byproducts of fermentation.
        Natural acids have the freshest, purest acid tastes. Among grapes they are tartaric, malic and citric. Oxalic acid, found for example in rhubarb, is another natural acid. Fermentation acids have milder, more complex tastes. The major fermentation acids are lactic, succinic and acetic.
        Acidity greatly influences the taste of wine. Therefore, winemakers need to understand the roles of the various acids, their occurance in common bases for making wines, their tastes, their sufficiency, how to measure them, and the principles for adjusting acids when necessary. These are the purposes to which this section is presented.