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Common Types of Wine Around the World

Happy New Year Wine Lovers!!!

It was so great being back home and you can bet I consumed way too much wine while in South Africa. But alas, it’s time to get back to reality. It’s time to learn and share my knowledge with you.       I thought it would be a good idea to ring in the New Year with some basic wine facts as a way to start afresh.        As many of you know, wine is made with grapes. But wine grapes are not the same table grapes you find at the supermarket. Wine grapes are small, sweet, have thick skin, and contain seeds. There are thousands of different kinds of wine grapes around the world and this is what makes wine such an exciting subject to explore.        Common Types of Wine Around the World           Red:     Cabernet Sauvignon    Merlot    Pinot Noir    Syrah    Zinfandel          White:     Chardonnay    Pinot Gris    Riesling    Sauvignon Blanc          RED      Cabernet Sauvignon     Let us begin with /Cab-er-nay-Saw-vin-yawn/       Taste: blackberry, blackcurrant, baking spices, cedar from oak    Style: full bodied    Food Pairing: lamb, beef, cheese       Cabernet Sauvignon is the most common wine in the world. It is full bodied with bold *tannins and a long finish driven mostly by the higher level of alcohol.     *Tannins are naturally occurring compounds that exist inside the grape skin seeds and stem.         Merlot        Taste: smoother and lower in tannins with a redder fruited flavor    Style: medium weight    Food Pairing: charred meats, grilled meats        Syrah      (Also known as Shiraz)        Taste: blueberry, plum, tobacco, black pepper, dark chocolate    Style: full bodied    Food Pairing: lamb, smoked meats       Syrah has intense fruit flavors and middle weight tannins.        Zinfandel        Taste: exotic fruits from overripe nectarines to red raspberries; sour cherries to blue plums; blueberries to blackberries    Style: light bodied to full bodied red, moderate tannins and high acidity giving it a bold taste     Food Pairing: chicken, pork, cured meat, Thai and Indian dishes       These wines are fruit forward and spicy with a medium finish.          Pinot Noir        Taste: very red fruited (cherries and cranberries) and a red floral flavor often with appealing vegetal notes of beet, rhubarb or mushroom    Style: light bodied with higher acid and soft tannins    Food Pairing: chicken, pork, veal and duck       Pinot Noir is a dry light bodied wine from France. The U.S. has increasingly become a major Pinot Noir producer as well.        WHITE      Chardonnay        Taste: yellow citrus, pear, apple and tropical fruits. Often cinnamon, butterscotch and toasted caramel notes from the oak    Style: medium to full bodied        These wines are dry and full-bodied; oak-aged and have spicy bourbon notes.  Unoaked  wines are lighter and have zesty traces of apple and citrus.        Pinot Gris        Taste: delicate citrus (limewater, orange zest) and apple skin, pear sauce with white floral notes    Style: light bodied white wine    Food Pairing: salad and delicate poached fish       Pinot Gris is dry and light bodied. It is made with white grapes planted in Italy. The wines are easy to drink leaving only a slightly bitter flavor on the palate.        Riesling        Taste: citrus, lemon juice, white peach and nectarine    Style: floral and fruit driven aromatic white that comes in varying sweetness    Food Pairing: chicken, pork, duck, turkey, Thai and Indian food       Riesling is always very high in acid and harmoniously sweet. People either find it sweet & sour, too dry or too sweet.        Sauvignon Blanc        Taste: aggressively citrus driven (grapefruit) with some exotic fruits like honeydew, melon, passion fruit, kiwi and always with flavors of quality grass, mint or green peppers    Style: light bodied to medium white    Food Pairing: fish, chicken, pork, veal and Mexican food       Sauvignon blanc’s dry white grapes wines are tart, with typical herbal and  green fruit flavors. It is also a parent to Cabernet Sauvignon.       There you have it friends. We have so many different wines to try from around the globe, so you can be sure that 2017 is going to be great!!

It was so great being back home and you can bet I consumed way too much wine while in South Africa. But alas, it’s time to get back to reality. It’s time to learn and share my knowledge with you.

 

I thought it would be a good idea to ring in the New Year with some basic wine facts as a way to start afresh.

 

As many of you know, wine is made with grapes. But wine grapes are not the same table grapes you find at the supermarket. Wine grapes are small, sweet, have thick skin, and contain seeds. There are thousands of different kinds of wine grapes around the world and this is what makes wine such an exciting subject to explore.

 

Common Types of Wine Around the World

 

Red:

Cabernet Sauvignon

Merlot

Pinot Noir

Syrah

Zinfandel

 

White:

Chardonnay

Pinot Gris

Riesling

Sauvignon Blanc

 

RED

Cabernet Sauvignon

Let us begin with /Cab-er-nay-Saw-vin-yawn/

 

Taste: blackberry, blackcurrant, baking spices, cedar from oak

Style: full bodied

Food Pairing: lamb, beef, cheese

 

Cabernet Sauvignon is the most common wine in the world. It is full bodied with bold *tannins and a long finish driven mostly by the higher level of alcohol.

*Tannins are naturally occurring compounds that exist inside the grape skin seeds and stem.

 

Merlot

 

Taste: smoother and lower in tannins with a redder fruited flavor

Style: medium weight

Food Pairing: charred meats, grilled meats

 

Syrah

(Also known as Shiraz)

 

Taste: blueberry, plum, tobacco, black pepper, dark chocolate

Style: full bodied

Food Pairing: lamb, smoked meats

 

Syrah has intense fruit flavors and middle weight tannins.

 

Zinfandel

 

Taste: exotic fruits from overripe nectarines to red raspberries; sour cherries to blue plums; blueberries to blackberries

Style: light bodied to full bodied red, moderate tannins and high acidity giving it a bold taste

Food Pairing: chicken, pork, cured meat, Thai and Indian dishes

 

These wines are fruit forward and spicy with a medium finish.

 

Pinot Noir

 

Taste: very red fruited (cherries and cranberries) and a red floral flavor often with appealing vegetal notes of beet, rhubarb or mushroom

Style: light bodied with higher acid and soft tannins

Food Pairing: chicken, pork, veal and duck

 

Pinot Noir is a dry light bodied wine from France. The U.S. has increasingly become a major Pinot Noir producer as well.

 

WHITE

Chardonnay

 

Taste: yellow citrus, pear, apple and tropical fruits. Often cinnamon, butterscotch and toasted caramel notes from the oak

Style: medium to full bodied

 

These wines are dry and full-bodied; oak-aged and have spicy bourbon notes. Unoaked wines are lighter and have zesty traces of apple and citrus.

 

Pinot Gris

 

Taste: delicate citrus (limewater, orange zest) and apple skin, pear sauce with white floral notes

Style: light bodied white wine

Food Pairing: salad and delicate poached fish

 

Pinot Gris is dry and light bodied. It is made with white grapes planted in Italy. The wines are easy to drink leaving only a slightly bitter flavor on the palate.

 

Riesling

 

Taste: citrus, lemon juice, white peach and nectarine

Style: floral and fruit driven aromatic white that comes in varying sweetness

Food Pairing: chicken, pork, duck, turkey, Thai and Indian food

 

Riesling is always very high in acid and harmoniously sweet. People either find it sweet & sour, too dry or too sweet.

 

Sauvignon Blanc

 

Taste: aggressively citrus driven (grapefruit) with some exotic fruits like honeydew, melon, passion fruit, kiwi and always with flavors of quality grass, mint or green peppers

Style: light bodied to medium white

Food Pairing: fish, chicken, pork, veal and Mexican food

 

Sauvignon blanc’s dry white grapes wines are tart, with typical herbal and  green fruit flavors. It is also a parent to Cabernet Sauvignon.

 

There you have it friends. We have so many different wines to try from around the globe, so you can be sure that 2017 is going to be great!!