Crisp (has high acidity) and delicate, floral and honeyed flavours. When aged, petrol and kerosene notes
- German in origin, this grape is considered one of the finest grapes in the world, second only to Cabernet Sauvignon.
- Developing a strong following in the New World, particularly in Australia and New Zealand
Most obvious aroma is apples but often matured in oak so will have an oaky, woody nose. Can also have tropical fruit flavours and aromas if particularly ripe.
- This is a very popular variety. Winemakers love it because it will take on different flavours, depending on what they do with it.
- The wines tend to come in two styles - very rich, oaky and full of tropical fruit (e.g. pineapples and bananas) or unoaked, minerally, clean apple and citrus fruit and very dry
Crisp (has very high acidity) and intense. Lots of green fruit flavours - gooseberries, limes, green apples, grass and elderflowers.
- This is a very distinctive variety which often has a powerful, herbaceous aroma - this means grassy, like green leaves, particularly those from South Africa and New Zealand.
- The Loire is the original home of thuis grape and Sancerre and Pouilly Fume are its most prestigious exports.
Often has lemon, honey and floral aromas. It is usually quite simple and fruity.
- A very adaptable grape which can make big powerful wine, light, simple and refreshing wine or luscious sweet wines.
- The majority of Chenin comes from either the Loire or South Africa which has become its second home
This wine usually has a distinctive scent of apricots and peaches and is full-bodied and rich. Sometimes there is a little bit of spice and pepper on the nose.
- This comes from the south of France and for a while all but died out because very few people were making wine from it. Fortunately, it has now been rescued it from oblivion.
Very light and delicate with some refreshing citrus and apple flavours and aromas but never powerful.
- The feature of this grape is that the wine it makes is clean and refreshing.
- It is very easy to drink and has recently become extremely popular both in white or rose form.
- Originally from northern Italy it is now emerging from all corners of the wine world inclusing Australia, Argentina and even Brazil.
Albarino Wines from this grape are distinctive, aromatic and have an almost peachy-like aroma.
- This grape is grown principally in North West Spain where the grapes' thick skins help them withstand the particularly damp climate.
- As a result the wines from this grape are sometimes notably high in alcohol, acidity, and flavour.
- This is a very distinctive, aromatic and spicy grape variety. It produces full-bodied wines with powerful aromas of rose petals, spice and exotic fruit like lychees.
- Originally grown largely in Alsace in France, where it makes some very good wines, it's now increasingly common in Australia and New Zealand.
- This wine is the classic match with spicy food and is often recommended as an accompaniment with Thai or other Far Eastern cooking.
- This grape is pretty much always used to make light, simple, refreshing white wines. Generally, the flavours are crisp citrus fruit and green apples.
- Another Italian grape which is really only grown in Italy.
- It's not the kind of grape that is ever going to back top quality wines but is used to make reliably fruity, simple and refreshing wines.
- This is the grape that makes some of the worlds most famous and expensive wines. It traditionally has flavours of blackcurrants, oak, dark fruit and spice.
- This is thought to be the best grape in the world and so is capable of making wines which can age for a very long time.
- It is often blended with Merlot and sometimes Shiraz.
The word most used to describe Merlot is plummy. You might also find oak, other dark fruit and prunes.
- This is a very popular choice, largely because it is often very easy drinking, fruity and smooth.
- It can be similar to Cabernet Sauvignon but with less tannin.
Look for aromas and flavours of cherries, red fruit, spice and smokiness in Syrah or Shiraz (as it is known in the New World).
- Big, flavourful and rich wines are often made with this grape variety.
- Australia's reputation for wine is partially based on wines made from Shiraz.
The flavours and aromas in this grape variety are overwhelmingly red fruits, especially raspberries. Sometimes you will get some spiciness or light oak flavours.
- Pinot Noir is capable of making very fine wines with great ageing potential.
- These wines tend to be lighter in colour and lighter bodied. It has been difficult to grow in countries outside of it's home in France but New Zealand's reputation as a serious producer is growing
This has flavours and aromas similar to Pinot Noir but is usually fuller and earthier and c an have a distinctive taste of burnt rubber.
- Pinotage is generally made in South Africa, where this grape comes from.
Medium bodied yet powerful wine, often with tobacco-scents due to oak aging and with strawberry, spices, and soft toffee.
- This is Spain's quality grape, and an essential component of Rioja.
- Without oak it can be quite fruity and spicy, however much of the wine produced from Tempranillo spends time in oak.
Sangiovese produces a medium to full, dry wine, which is slightly spicy, with bitter cherry, spices, tobacco, chocolate and herb flavours.
- This is one of the best known Italian grape varieties although you will rarely see it listed on the label as the wine is usually named after where it is made.
- The famous Tuscan wines of Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano are made with Sangiovese.
Wines made from Gamay have lots of fresh, juicy red fruit flavours and are very low in tannin.
- Beaujolais is the most famous and well-known wine made using Gamay.
- Beaujolais is made by a method called Carbonic Maceration which ensures that the wine has very little tannin and is very fresh tasting.
The Nebbiolo grape makes wine which is rich, full-bodied and has dark fruit flavours. It often has aromas of tar and violets, making the scent very complex and interesting.
- This is a grape variety which is largely grown in the north of Italy and makes some of the finest Italian wines.
- Because it makes wines high in tannin and acidity it often requires lots of ageing before being ready to drink.
These wines are big, fruity and full-bodied with flavours and aromas of plums and dark fruit.
- Originally this grape was widely grown in the south west of France where it is known as Cot.
- Argentina now makes a lot of wine with the Malbec grape and is renowned for making great wines from the grape.
Wines made from Zinfandel are fruity and juicy, easy drinking and full of dark fruit flavours.
- Zinfandel is thought to be the same grape as a variety which comes from the south of Italy called Primitivo.
- Zinfadel's most popular form has, in the past, been as a pale rosé called Blush, rather than red.