Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

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pepper, a tasting term for two very different aromas commonly found in red wines. Bell peppers, or green peppers is used characteristically in the US of underripe cabernet sauvignon. A freshly sliced green pepper or capsicum liberates the chemical compound 2-methoxy-3-isobutylpyrazine (see methoxypyrazines), a vegetable-like or herbaceous aroma to which many tasters have a very low threshold (see flavour compounds).

Young wines made from the syrah grape, on the other hand, particularly if it does not reach full maturity, can smell of black peppercorns while grüner veltliner sometimes smells of white peppercorns. See rotundone.