Volatile Acidity in a wine

Hi everyone,

Could someone please say how to decipher  VA in a wine while blind tasting. Does it only exist in tannic reds or those that had good oak treatment/possible warm climate viticulture.

Thank you.


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  • Less important than how it smells—in a very aromatic wine it's hard to smell—is how it feels. VA is caustic when smelled; it burns your nose like vinegar. It's never going to be as intense as vinegar is a wine, but it has a perceivable tingle. The only thing you could mistake for is the burn of alcohol, but they feel different. A very easy way to learn the difference is to water down vinegar and a neutral spirit and compare how they feel next to each other.