Grape Varietals Pt. 1

varietal1In the world of winemaking, there are only a few vines that grow the right grape to make wine. About 90% of wines are made from a vine called vitis vinifera. However, within vitis vinifera, there are thousands of varieties of grapes. I’ll introduce you to the major varietals: 20 to be exact.

  1. Barbera- Pronounced as (bahr-BEH-rah) This varietal is most known for producing wines with a very tart flavor. This varietal is native to the Piedmont region of Italy. However, it has made its way to warm areas such as Argentina and the Central Valley of California.
  2. Cabernet Franc-Pronounced as (kah-behr-NAY frahn) This varietal is native to different regions of France. Cabernet Franc is sometimes used to blend with other varietals because it is used to “tone down” other high tannin wines because of its fruity tones.
  3. Cabernet Sauvignon- Pronounced as (kah-behr-NAY soh-vihn-YOHN) This varietal is perhaps one of the most well-known around the world. More specifically, this varietal has gained a lot of popularity in the new world. In California, it is one of the most produced varietals among others.
  4. Chardonnay- Pronounced as (shahr-dohn-AY) This varietal is closely associated with California. That is because Chardonnay is most commonly produced in California. Other regions it is grown in is Burgundy in France, and different areas of Australia. Normally, chardonnay is fruity, but when it goes through malolactic fermentation, it starts to take on a buttery taste. Perfect with your bowl of popcorn for those movie nights.