I Liked That White Wine – What Kind Was It?

Getting into the wine world can be intimidating at first, so knowing the basics can help you make better choices when shopping at your local wine shop. Although there are many different types of white grapes used to make wine around the world, there are three basic varieties that everyone should be familiar with. Those three are Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, and Chardonnay. Two notable mentions are Riesling and Moscato wines, which will be explained as well.

Pinot Grigio
The flavor profile of a Pinot Grigio is often described as acidic and pleasantly sour without much sweetness. The overall taste can be described as “bright” with the specific tasting notes varying depending on where the grapes were grown. Pinot Grigio wine goes well with lighter dishes such as seafood pasta or herbed chicken because the brightness will complement the flavor of those dishes.

Sauvignon Blanc
This wine overall has a lighter flavor and can be described as having a “fresh” and “crisp” taste. Flavor notes can include apple because the wine is normally somewhat dry, slightly acidic, and has a touch of sweetness – like an apple. If you tend to like more delicate flavors without too much acidity, you will probably enjoy a Sauvignon Blanc. Dishes that include fish will likely pair well with this wine because the richness of the fish complements the flavor of the wine.

Although the word “buttery” is often used to describe food, it is the perfect description of one of the flavor notes found in Chardonnay wine. There are two popular methods used when making Chardonnay wines that will alter their flavors, which are labeled on the bottle as “oaked” or “unoaked”. The wine would be aged in wooden barrels if it is oaked, and in metal, if it is unoaked. The oaked version might have more spice notes, whereas the unoaked would have more acidity and bright flavors. Chardonnay wine pairs well with cheeses and is best for those who prefer drier wine.

Riesling & Moscato
For some, the dry and acidic flavors in white wine can be unpleasant, especially if you are not having a meal while drinking it. Both Riesling and Moscato wines are much sweeter compared to the three wines explained above. The alcohol content of Riesling and Moscato wines tends to be lower than other white wines as well, so the taste will have less alcohol flavor. Enjoy these wines when you are craving a sweeter taste such as after a meal, or consider using them in a wine cocktail.

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