What’s a Variety? Definitions in the wine world

What’s a Variety? Definitions in the wine world

What's a Variety? Definitions in the wine world.
What's a Variety? Definitions in the wine world.

What’s a Variety? Definitions in the wine world.

Did you ever been in a wine store and heard the term “varietal” being spoken as you were looking at the different bottles? It’s possible that you’re curious about the subject matter of their conversation. In order to get you up to speed on grape varieties, here is a brief introduction to each one.

What exactly is meant by the term “varietal”?

When referring to grapes for the production of wine, the word “varietal” is used. Wines may be made from a single kind of grape or from a combination of many different kinds of grapes. In common parlance, you would refer to the actual category of fruit by using the term variety (or varieties), but you would use the word varietal to talk about the classification of wine.

When you drink a wine made from a single variety of grape, you get a straightforward expression of the grape’s characteristics and the terroir; on the other hand, a wine made from a blend of different grape varieties is a custom combination made by the winemaker to express a particular regional style or creative compilation.

What are some of the most common types of wine available?

There are a lot of different grape kinds blended together to make wine, but there are also a lot of wines created from just one type of grape.

There are certain grapes that have a long tradition of being combined with others, while others are more often left on their own. Pinot noir, cabernet sauvignon, zinfandel, chardonnay, and pinot gris are some examples of single-varietal wines that are encountered very often.

How to Determine whether It Is a Varietal of a Single Type

The labeling of wine may, at the very least, be baffling. When attempting to determine precisely what kind of wine is included in a bottle, it is easiest to categorize it as either a wine from the New World or an old world wine. A location or appellation, such as Bourgogne or Chateauneuf-du-Pape, will almost always be listed on the bottle of an Old World wine.

In this scenario, you would need to be aware that a red wine from Burgundy (Bourgogne) is most likely going to be a single-varietal of pinot noir, but a red wine from Chateauneuf-du-Pape is a mix of grenache, syrah, mourvèdre, cinsault, and probably a few other sorts of grapes as well.

There is a possibility that the back of the bottle does not include a list of these grapes.

On the front of the label of a bottle of New World wine, you will often see the varietal name, such as “chardonnay,” “chenin blanc,” or “zinfandel.”

When a wine is made from a mix of multiple grape types, the winemaker or the estate often chooses a name for the wine, and the back label may or may not include a list of the grape varieties that were used to produce the wine. As can be seen, this labeling scheme does not adhere to the most linear format.

You will, however, have no trouble locating a wine that is made from a single varietal if you are familiar with some of the indicators that you should search for. If not, have no fear! You need just inquire at your neighborhood wine store, and the staff there will point you in the correct route.

Single-Varietal Wines and the Varying Percentages They Contain

To make matters even more confusing, single-varietal wines aren’t typically made from just a single kind of grape.

Do you give that look? It varies from nation to country as well as area to region, with each developing its own rules that define minimal quantities to declare anything a single-varietal.

In order for a wine to be designated “primary,” just 75% of it must be made from the principal grape in the United States. It is possible for a wine to be named chardonnay even if it contains up to 25% of grapes from a different variety than the chardonnay grape.

The state of Oregon requires wineries to abide by requirements that are a little bit more stringent, such as the requirement that the principal grape must account for at least 90% of wine unless the grapes are typically combined to produce a certain kind of wine.

In addition, the standards of the EU are rather more stringent, and in order for a wine to be labeled as coming from a certain variety, it must contain at least 85% of that varietal.

Exploring Varietals

Discovering a grape’s single-varietal wines is an excellent method to get to know it on a deeper level.

After gaining experience with a certain varietal profile, you will eventually be able to recognize that varietal profile in blends and comprehend the qualities that it contributes to the overall style of the blended beverage.

Levels Of Wine Sommeliers And What They Mean

4 Wine Issues That May Actually Be Excellent

Roman Wine And Food Combinations

Why Do We Serve Sparkling Red Wine Cold?

Optimal Serving Temperature For Pinot Noir Wine