Take your mind off it and find out how many Wine Calories there are in a glass… take it easy, the situation is not as dramatic as you think.
Wine is tasty, completes a meal, pleases the senses, improves moods and brings celebration to every moment.
For these reasons, holidays and anniversaries, goals achieved, promotions, romantic occasions definitely deserve a glass of good wine.
Yet, as a sour note, here we find ourselves thinking: how many calories will there be in this glass of wine? It seems like an obvious question but even wine has its amount of calories.
Don’t worry, just know! A good wine never spoils the party.
Wine Calories: a Glass full of Flavour and Energy
In difficult times, during wars and famines, wine was often synonymous with both celebration and nourishment. A drink that comes from the fruits of the earth, processed so that they retain all their genuine qualities as much as possible. This is the goal of those who produce good wine today: to create nectars rich in aromas and flavours that can be nicely smelled, drunk and almost eaten.
With all these qualities, wine unlike water, being so rich in extract, also gives a touch of extra energy.
An energy that is also expressed in the form of caloric intake.
Wine Calories: from Where?
Where do the calories in a wine come from? The calories come from the sugars but, above all, from the alcohol content of a wine.
Sugar and (mostly) Alcohol
During the fermentation process of the must, the yeasts feed on the sugars naturally present in the grapes and transform them into alcohol. Not all sugars are transformed in this process and they form what is called residual sugar in a wine, given by the presence of fructose, sucrose and glucose.
This residue is almost completely negligible in a dry wine, equal to about 2-3 g/litre, while it is more important in sweet wines.
For all wines, the fundamental element that determines the caloric intake is the quantity of alcohol.
Therefore, to know how many calories there are in a glass of wine, you should know its alcohol content: a fact always reported on each label.
Wine Calories: how to calculate the Calories in a Glass
When we read an alcohol content of 14% it means that in every 100 ml of that wine there are 14 ml of alcohol.
In addition to this first fundamental fact, we must answer a few questions before being able to make the right calculation and know the number of calories.
How many calories are in 1 ml of alcohol? Soon said: about 7 Kcal per ml/gram.
What is the specific gravity of alcohol? Equal to 0.79 grams per litre.
Knowing this, you can simply multiply the caloric value of the alcohol by the percentage of alcohol in a given wine.
Here is the formula:
Calories = Amount of alcohol X Specific gravity X Calories of alcohol
Therefore, if we consider a glass of wine of about 100 ml, with an alcohol content of 14%, we would have assumed the following quantity of calories:
14 x 0.79 x 7 = approximately 77 calories
How many ml of wine in a glass?
How many calories in a glass of wine? Depends on how full you fill it. In general, white wine flûtes and tulips contain a smaller amount of wine than large red wine balloons. Not to mention that the right service of a quality wine does not include filling it to the brim. As a standard tasting measure, the following quantities are considered as “glasses” of wine:
150ml for red wines
120ml for white wines
100ml for sparkling wines
Wine Calories: Sparkling Wines
Of all dry wines, sparkling wines are those with the least amount of calories, precisely because of their reduced amount of alcohol. In fact, generally, champagne and sparkling wines have an alcohol content of between 11 and 12.5 g/litre.
Therefore, considering a standard glass of 100 ml, the calculation will be carried out as follows:
11 x 0.79 x 7 = 60.83 calories
11.5 x 0.79 x 7 = 63.60 calories
12 x 0.79 x 7 = 66.40 calories
12.5 x 0.79 x 7 = 69.20 calories
So after a single glass of Champagne we would have assumed a maximum of almost 70 Kcal.
Wine Calories: White Wines
White wines have a different alcohol range. Generally, we can find white wines with a delicate alcohol content, of 11.5% for example, as well as much more structured and warm whites, even up to 15%.
Furthermore, in this case, a glass of white wine normally contains more product, being more capacious.
Therefore, the calculation of calories will be carried out as follows, taking into account a white wine with an alcohol content of 13% (like this tasty Gavi here) and a glass filled with 120 ml of wine.
(13/100 x 120) x 0.79 x 7 = 86 calories
In conclusion, as regards white wines, the caloric content of a 120 ml glass will always be lower than 100 Kcal.
Wine Calories: Red Wine
Red wines: a higher alcohol content and a larger glass. Two elements that also translate into a higher caloric intake. Dry reds, among all types of wines, are the richest in extract and, often, also in sugars that are transformed into alcohol. In the case of red wines, the alcohol content ranges between about 12% and 16%.
Considering a quantity of 150 ml of red wine, with an alcohol percentage equal to 14%, we will have the following caloric intake:
(14/100 x 150) x 0.79 x 7 = 116 calories
Therefore, the caloric content of a 150 ml glass of red wine will reach a maximum of 130 Kcal, for 150 ml of delicious tasting. For example, a glass of the famous Chocholate Block has 120 calories … it’s all worth it!
Wine Calories: Sweet Wines
In sweet wines there is not only alcohol. In these wines the presence of sugars is already more significant, from a minimum of about 45 g per litre. The calculation to do is simple. Considering a dessert wine with a residual sugar of 200 g per litre, with one gram of sugar providing 3.92 Kcal, the operation will be as follows, to calculate the calories in a 100 ml glass of product:
3.92 x 200 g x 100ml = 78 Kcal
These are only the calories deriving from the sugars present in a glass of sweet wine.
The alcohol content will be added to the sum, according to what we have seen previously. Therefore, considering a sweet wine with an alcohol content of 13%, we will have:
13 x 0.79 x 7 = 71 calories
So, for a glass of dessert wine of about 100 ml, we are going to assume 78 + 71 Kcal, therefore almost 150 calories per glass.
The main problem, when calculating sugars, is that this quantity is often not indicated on the label, unlike alcohol.
Wine Calories: Spirits
Well, with whiskey, rum and all the spirits, the numbers grow, since the alcohol content of these products also grows. But, will the caloric intake really be higher? Here too, the crux of the matter lies in the quantity and, as we know, usually the tastings of spirits are done in smaller quantities. Indeed, during a party or a celebration dinner, it is more common to consume a larger quantity of wine than vodka.
In general, distillates have a minimum of 40% alcohol content, like for example this “magic” rum.
This means that in a 50 ml glass of spirit we will have more or less 110 Kcal.
The calculation to be done is the same used for wines:
40/100 x 50 x 0.79 x 7 = 110 calories
Therefore in a 40% distillate, tasting a small glass of about 50 ml, we will assume about 110 Kcal.
The Zero Calories Wines are real
Well yes, low-calorie wines and even zero-calorie ones are real. How is it possible? Is it a magical event?
It depends on how we look at it. We have seen that alcohol is the main caloric source of a wine, therefore a low-alcoholic or alcohol-free wine will certainly have less impact on our diet.
An alcohol-free wine comes from already vinified wine from which the alcohol is removed through an osmotic process. This process takes place thanks to filter membranes which extract the alcohol in gaseous form, keeping the product stable. The result is a wine with a <0.05% alcohol content.
This miraculous feat is called dealcoholation and leaves the nutritional and healthy properties of the wine intact. This process removes only the alcohol, without using any chemical substance, only through a mechanical procedure. So you can appreciate the aromas and flavour of a wine without the annoyance of alcohol … and calories.