Positive designation and most important attribute for the colour of a wine in the context of a wine address (in verbal form) and wine evaluation (by means of a point system). Other terms, some of which are used in combination and vary according to the type of wine or the colour of the wine, are bright, brilliant, torch-light, shiny, crystal-clear, mirror-clear and transparent. To determine the clarity of a white wine in particular, hold the tilted wine glass against a light source in front of a bright background. A clear wine always has brilliance, it shines even with darker colours.
A deep-coloured red wine cannot be transparent, of course, but it can be very clear. The highest level of this is also called black brilliance. This is derived from a common method of determining clarity. The filled red wine glass is viewed against the light in front of a dark surface. Any cloudiness would then become visible through lighter reflections. An absolutely clear red wine, on the other hand, will appear black due to a lack of reflections. A term often used in the past for clear red wines with simultaneous depth of colour is fackelhell (the ethymological meaning, however, is not known). Cloudiness or a cloudy, flaky texture indicates a wine defect. A swirled deposit, while to be avoided if possible, does not signify a defect or fault. A related term of clear is clean (unclouded, so to speak). Negative terms are blind (opaque, cloudy) and dull.