One of the most used words when describing wines and indeed also one of the most important "building blocks" in a wine!
When we speak about acidity in wine we mean that fresh, sour thingy that reminds us about lemons, limes, sour apples and even pineapples...
Acids are one of 4 fundamental traits in wine (the others are tannin, alcohol, and sweetness). Acidity gives a wine its tart and sour taste. Fundamentally speaking, all wines lie on the acidic side of the pH spectrum, and most range from 2.5 to about 4.5 pH (7 is neutral).
Without acidity there would be no freshness or nerve in the wine, the fruit would taste flabby and overripe and the wine would be completely out of balance. The wine also wouldn't last very long! On the other hand; a wine with too much acidity is harsh, tart and unpleasant to drink...
So as always it's about balance. As when we cook, also when it comes to wines, it's all about striking the perfect balance between sweet and sour, but it's not always that simple as the natural acidity in wine comes in several shapes.
There are several different types of acids found in wine, which will affect how acidic a wine tastes. The most prevalent acids found in wine are tartaric acid, malic acid, and citric acid.
Sit for a minute and imagine yourself tasting lemonade and pay attention to how your mouth puckers just from thinking about it. This sensation is how our mouths anticipate the acidity in lemonade. The next time you taste wine, pay attention to this specific puckering sensation.
So, acidity is a much needed and welcome thing in wine, but as with everything in life its most enjoyable in perfectly balanced moderation.