Topic: Varietals-and-Wine-Styles

Symphony: 40 Years in the Making

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Symphony is a white grape bred from Muscat of Alexandria and Grenache Gris by Dr. Harold Olmo. Grown in California, Symphony grapes are found in many wine kits.

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The many wines of Chardonel

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Chardonel, as the name implies, has Chardonnay as one of its parents and is used to make similar wine styles. Its popularity is largely along the East Coast and Midwest regions of the United States, but its wines stand up against those from any region.

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Crafting Chardonnay: Tips from the Pros

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There are many different techniques and styles to choose from when it comes to Chardonnay. Do you want a buttery, barrel-aged Chardonnay or a crisp, acidic one? When weighing your options, use

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Making Port-Style Wine: Tips from the Pros

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Port is a fortified wine made in Portugal, but many North American winemakers are making their own versions. Use their advice to try your own Port-style wine! Winemaker: Matt Meyer, Meyer Family

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Offbeat Reds

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Getting sick of the same old Cab? Try a red wine that’s more out of the mainstream, like Carménère, Charbono, Dolcetto, Montepulciano, or Tinta Cão.

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Touriga Nacional

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I was a late bloomer when it came to seeing the world. It wasn’t until 10 years ago that I had the opportunity to start traveling internationally. Despite growing up in an

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Making White Wines from Red Grapes

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As I started working on this story, a surprising question occurred to me: “What makes wine white?” “The color” seems obvious when you look at a restaurant wine list or walk up

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Pinotage in the Spring

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Spring is here, and that means a new winemaking season is upon us! A couple of experienced winemakers share the joys that come with making wine from South America and South Africa, as they recall their recent experience making Pinotage wine from South Africa last spring.

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Making Off-Dry White Wine: Tips from the Pros

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There is a lot more to off-dry wines than what you may perceive from mass-produced discount bottles from the supermarket. A little sweetness with balanced acidity can add complexity and create a

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Ruby Cabernet

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When I started graduate school at UC-Davis in 1995, one of my first classes was a seminar series. Being the first session of the academic year, a round of introductions started the

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Orange is the New White

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You may have noticed the “orange wines” that have been popping up on trendy wine lists lately. These are white wines that are purposely exposed to skin contact and oxidized to produce wines that are quite orange in appearance.

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Traminette: Little Gewürztraminer grows up

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It is so wonderful to have such friends and colleagues at WineMaker magazine who keep inviting me back to speak at the annual conference (and I am looking forward to San Diego,

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Matching Wine Style to Vineyard Site

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  What kind of wine do you want to make? What kind of wines do you and your guests like to drink? Luscious, soft, fruity? Lean, austere, earthy? Tannic, sturdy, powerful? We

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Tannat: The Tannin-rich Grape of Legend

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Tannat grapes are synonymous with highly phenolic and tannic must. Learn about this grape’s storied past and how to hit the sweet spot in the vineyard and the winery to tame this potent grape.

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Carignane/Mazuelo: A Spanish grape with many names

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Many wine grapes have different names when grown in various parts of the world. That is especially true for Carignane, which is officially called Mazuelo in its homeland of Spain. Find out how both viticulturalists and enologists handle this unique grape.

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Alicante Bouschet: An eccentric grape with a unique history

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At one time, Alicante Bouschet was one of the most popular grapes planted in the United States. Learn about the history of this grape variety and how you can add it to your winemaking quiver.

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Making Rosé Wine: Tips from the Pros

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For too long, rosé remained cast under the shadow of overly sweet and one-dimensional White Zinfandels. But the surge of popularity in North America has removed the myth that rosé wines are

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Black Spanish

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Will the real Black Spanish stand up? I have to admit, when we first decided on this variety as a topic, I had never thought I had made wine from it. However,

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Petit Manseng

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A long time ago, brave souls looking for an easier route to the Far East set sail west across the Atlantic Ocean. Controversial at the time given the prevailing philosophy was that

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Aligoté

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I am writing this on an airplane on my way to Burgundy, the crossroads of France known for its great Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines. But did you know that Burgundy has

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White Wine Case Study

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I planted my hobby vineyard in 1999 and made my first wine in the 2002 vintage. I have 125 vines of Chardonnay and 125 of Pinot Noir planted on 1⁄3 acre (0.13

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Sémillon

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Wine literature is essentially a snapshot in the history of wine as portrayed by that author. Have you ever received or purchased a book on wine, read it cover to cover, made

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Petite Sirah

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When I was first introduced to wine in the 1980s, I was certainly overwhelmed about how complex the subject of wine could be. I had some friends that had enrolled in a

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Muscadine

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I’ll just have to begin this column with the statement, “I had no idea!” A few years ago, an attendee to one of my Step-by-Step Winemaking classes offered through UC-Davis mentioned that

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Viognier

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In the 1960s, Viognier seemed to be an endangered grape, planted only in dwindling numbers in a pair of obscure redoubts in France, the shrinking Condrieu region and the one-winery Château-Grillet AOC.


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