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The subjective sweetness of a wine is determined by the interaction of several factors, including the amount of sugar in the wine (residual sugar), but also the relative levels of alcohol, acids, and tannins. Sugars and alcohol enhance a wine's sweetness; acids and bitter tannins counteract it.
Residual sugar is usually measured in grams of sugar per litre of wine, often abbreviated to g/L. Sugar content in a wine is usually found at higher levels in late-harvest and sweet wines. Wine can also be sweetened by the addition of sugar in some form after fermentation is completed e.g. sparkling wine, fortified wines. According to the EU regulations, the terms used to indicate sweetness of wine are Dry (up to 4g/L), Medium dry (up to 12g/L), Medium (up to 45g/L), Sweet (45+g/L).
Sparkling wines have different ratings: Brut Nature (no added sugar) (0-3g/L), Extra Brut (0-6g/L), Brut (0-12g/L), Extra Dry, Extra Sec, Extra Seco (12-17g/L), Dry, Sec, Seco (17-32g/L), Demi-sec, Semi-seco (32-50g/L), Doux, Sweet, Dulce (50+g/L).