Classic grapes

How to Decode Red and White Rhone Blends

How to Decode Red and White Rhone Blends

Washington, Paso Robles, South Australia — despite having varying locations and topography, these New World wine regions all have something in common. All are billing themselves as the next big region to produce world-class Rhône blends. Now, at first glance, this might seem a bit confusing. The Rhône Valley is an actual place, located along a river […]

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An Illustrated Guide to Pinotage From South Africa

An Illustrated Guide to Pinotage From South Africa

Love it or hate it, most can agree that Pinotage is distinctive. After all, it isn’t a naturally occuring grape variety. This crossing of Pinot Noir and Cinsault (at that time called Hermitage, hence the name “Pino-tage”) was created in 1925 by scientist Abraham Perold in his personal garden. Why? Nobody knows — Perold left […]

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Domaine des Hauts de Sanziers Saumur Rouge 2016

Domaine des Hauts de Sanziers Saumur Rouge 2016

Smell is closely associated with memory, something that wine reminds us of at the most unexpected times. Sometimes, when sticking your nose in a glass as a mere formality, a wave of recognition washes over. I once blind-tasted a wine so striking that, although I couldn’t pinpoint the producer, grape, or region, I immediately recollected […]

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An Illustrated Guide to Viognier From France

An Illustrated Guide to Viognier From France

It doesn’t get much more aromatic than Viognier, a white grape known for its intensely fruity, floral, exotic notes. The nose may smell sweet, but the palate is typically dry and full-bodied, and its lower acidity gives the impression of softness. While Viognier is grown in much of southern France, its most famous iterations come […]

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An Illustrated Guide to Barbera From Italy

An Illustrated Guide to Barbera From Italy

Barbera is quite the comeback story. Once the redheaded stepchild of Piedmont winemakers, relegated to the lesser vineyards behind its golden-boy brother Nebbiolo, Barbera is now known for making easy-drinking, acid-driven, everyday reds that pair with everything from pizza to barbecued meats. Some winemakers are even planting Barbera in top vineyards throughout the Langhe subregion […]

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These Three Wine Regions Are Redefining What Sauvignon Blanc Can Be

These Three Wine Regions Are Redefining What Sauvignon Blanc Can Be

Sauvignon Blanc is not a cool grape. It’s a classic, certainly, but it isn’t cool. That’s due in part to decades of ubiquity. The third-most popular white grape variety among U.S. consumers, Sauvignon Blanc is found everywhere from grocery stores to romance novels to scented candles. Hailing from New Zealand, France, or sometimes California, it […]

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