COLOUR - WHITE
Generally speaking white wines have less variety of colours than red wines do. The most classic colour is a lemon-green colour. This changes to a medium lemon to golden yellow colour, and with age a deep gold or amber colour.
As white wines don’t spend time with their skins they will all retain that classic lemon-green colour throughout their whole life. It isn’t until the wines go through winemaking or ageing processes that the colour varies.
Malolactic fermentation, a secondary fermentation, gives the wines buttery flavours but also changes the colour from lemon-green to a richer lemon colour.
Oak ageing will give the wines a deeper yellow or gold colour – this is due to a steady oxidation process of the wines which takes place in oak ageing. As the wine comes in contact with oxygen it will start to discolour and turn golden yellow. This is not a bad thing by any means; in fact many interesting nutty flavours develop in the wines on contact with oxygen.
Note:This is also a controlled oxidation process different to that mentioned in the wine faults section.