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Wine grapes

Wine is a combination of place and grape variety, of which there is a baffling array. Below is our quick guide to nearly 700 of the most important in the wine world today.

Wine_Grapes_UK_final_cover_portrait_1 Wine_Grapes_US_open

And because, for us wine lovers, a brief glimpse is not enough, Jancis, Julia Harding and Dr José Vouillamoz have toiled for four years to produce Wine Grapes - a beautifully designed, full colour, 1,200-page book providing unprecedented detail on 1,368 vine varieties currently making wine in commercial circulation. For more information see winegrapes.org.

For information on how to order, please see our Books section.

Please feel free to add any comments on instances of grape varieties you have encountered from unexpected places.

White wine grapes

Red wine grapes

Detailed grape profiles:


Purple grapes
Cabernet Sauvignon
Merlot
Pinot Noir
Syrah/Shiraz
Grenache
Tempranillo
Sangiovese
Nebbiolo
Barbera
Sousão
Malbec
Carignan
Gamay
Cabernet Franc
Zinfandel
Mourvèdre

Green grapes
Chardonnay
Sauvignon blanc
Riesling
Pinot Gris/Pinot Grigio
Chenin Blanc
Pinot Blanc/Pinot Bianco
Gewurztraminer
Viognier
Muscat
Semillon
Grüner Veltliner
Silvaner/Sylvaner

The latest addition to our collection of grape profiles at Resources/Learn about wine/ Wine grapes . Lemberger, also known as Blauer Lemberger, has, like virtually all red wine grapes grown in Germany, become increasingly popular there in recent years so that now total plantings are. More...
Please note that italics refer to grape varieties that have their own entries in this guide to hundreds of the most significant grapes currently grown around the world to produce red, and pink, wine. Abouriou , minor variety in South West France which was also known as Early Burgundy in. More...
Please note that italics refer to grape varieties that have their own entries in this guide to hundreds of the most significant grapes currently grown around the world to produce white wine. Airén , the grape of the vast La Mancha region in central Spain and therefore the world's most. More...
Ten, perhaps five, years ago very few wine lovers outside Austria had even heard of Grüner Veltliner. Today, no self-respecting restaurant wine list, whether in New York or Hong Kong, can afford to be without at least one example of this, Austria's signature white wine grape.. More...
I'm not a huge enthusiast for the sexual stereotyping of wines but even I can see that Cabernet Franc might be described as the feminine side of Cabernet Sauvignon. It is subtly fragrant and gently flirtatious rather than massively muscular and tough in youth. Because Cabernet Sauvignon has so. More...
It seems almost incredible today that Germany's most popular vine variety in the early 20 th century was Silvaner. Today it is only the fifth most planted variety, being a long way behind the two most planted white wine grapes Riesling and Müller Thurgau and having been overtaken recently by. More...
Malbec was originally a grape associated with south west France but today is much more glorious in South America. Better known then as Cot, it was the most commonly planted vine throughout south west France, including Bordeaux, and was still widely grown there until the severe winter of 1956. More...
Ten, perhaps five, years ago very few wine lovers outside Austria had even heard of Grüner Veltliner. Today, no self-respecting restaurant wine list, whether in New York or Hong Kong, can afford to be without at least one example of this, Austria's signature white wine grape. I. More...
Semillon (Sémillon in French) is one of those grapes like Riesling which tends to be much more appreciated by wine insiders than by the average wine drinker. They know that, were it not for the richness of Semillon the wine and the thin skins with their propensity to be nobly affected by. More...
The Muscat grape may not be thought of as one of the great international classics but its history is many times longer than that of such newcomers as Cabernet Sauvignon for example. It was almost certainly the grape variety referred to by writers in classical times as being particularly attractive. More...
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