What the F*** is Earthy?
Hold on to your butts, this is one we have to wade through a bit of mud to get to the bottom of. Earthy is a popular descriptor used in wine, but something that a lot of amateur winos have a bit of trouble really holding down. Is that because its an acquired taste? Or is it total bullshit? Well, we did some digging, shovels and all, to find out just what the fuck earthy wine really is.
When we asked a few winos, dug into a few critic reviews, and drank a few wines that had been described as such, we kind of got what people were trying to tell us. The term "earthy" is a descriptor used to point out flavors like dust, dirt, soil, and sometimes mushrooms. Nicer terms can be forest floor, wet autumn leaves, or wet stone and gravel. It can be nice, but its off putting for most. I mean, why the hell would you want to be drinking forest floor? How do you even realize what forest floor tastes like? Who goes out licking the forest floor?
So what is the point of "earthy" why not just describe the wine as "tasting like dirt?" Well Madeline Puckette of Wine Folly nails it perfectly. Earthy is...
A classic go-to move for a wine writer trying to describe that awkward green and unpleasant finish on a wine. They don’t want to hate on the wine, they just want you to know that if you don’t like the wine it means you don’t like earthy and you’re a bad person.
Cheers Madeline! Could not have said it better. Its not exactly a pleasant taste, but some can get behind it. Its a bit weird, and funky, and if its your jam then enjoy it. For most wine drinkers though, "earthy" is like an yellow flag, proceed with caution.