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VineTutor’s Wine Grape Flashcards

Maybe you checked out our Wine Grape Mega-List. A link to it is on the right. Now that you’ve studied the list, use these flashcards to solidify your knowledge. 

There are tens of thousands of grape varieties in the world. Universities and vineyard operations are creating new varietals all of the time. But, this list will help you stand out from the crowd.

Cava

cava is the premier sparkling of spain. the wine uses a similar quality tier system to champagne but champions several of spain?s native grapes including macabeu (viura), xarel-lo, and parellada.

Beaujolais

a french region just south of bourgogne that?s devoted to gamay-based wines. most beaujolais are simple, rustic reds, but the 10 crus offer exceptional quality.

Melon

melon or melon de bourgogne is the grape of the muscadet region of france, known for its lean, mineral, and saline driven white wines that pair famously with seafood.

Cap Classique

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vouvray

a regional wine from france?s loire valley dedicated to the production of wines from the chenin blanc grape; available in an array of styles from dry to sweet, and still to sparkling.

Ice Wine

a sweet, late harvest wine that can only be made when grapes naturally freeze in the vineyard at a minimum -8°c/17.6°f. popular varieties include riesling, vidal, and cabernet franc.

Palomino Fino

palomino is the prized pony in the sherry triangle; most notably jerez, where it grows on chalky soils called albariza (al-bah-ree-tha,) and is used in making sherry. a few still, dry, single-varietal wines exist and expound saltiness.

Gamay

a fruity, floral and sometimes earthy light-bodied red that is the main variety planted in beaujolais. outside of france, gamay has a tiny but devoted following.

Catawba

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Lambrusco

a family of 8 closely related grape varieties native to italy that are made into sparkling wines, ranging from delicately colored rosés to deeply colored reds.

Muscadine

muscadine (vitis rotundifolia) is a north american grape species that?s naturally high in polyphenols (antioxidants). wines are exceptionally challenging to make well, given that so few are doing it.

Loureiro

one of the major grapes used in the wines of the northern portuguese wine region vinho verde. the wines are bright and display aromas of peach, ripe citrus and white blossom.

Listán Negro

most notably found in spain?s canary islands, this dark skinned red grape is also found in peru, where it is known as negra peruana and used for the production of pisco.

Schiava

a group of several varieties, the finest of which is called schiava gentile. wines are sweetly aromatic and light-bodied with aromas reminiscent to cotton candy and roses.

Trento

a regional sparkling wine from northern italy dedicated to making wines using the champagne method. chardonnay features prominently in these bubbly wines although you?ll occasionally find pinot noir, pinot blanc, or pinot meunier blended in.

Crémant

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Franciacorta

a regional sparkling wine from northern italy. made in several styles, using the same method and grapes as champagne, with the addition of pinot blanc.

Champagne

the most iconic sparkling wine in the world is a blend of grapes including chardonnay, pinot noir, and pinot meunier. the most treasured champagne wines age for a minimum of 3 years.

Vinho verde

a regional wine blend from portugal offered in both white, rosé and red styles. the most popular style is a fun, fruity white that usually has a touch of spritz.

Pinot Meunier

this fruity red grape is mostly seen as a chief blending partner in the world?s most popular sparkling wine, champagne.

Erbaluce

a rarely encountered piedmontese varietal; vinified usually as a light-bodied, high acid white wine, also sometimes made into sweet wines using the passito method.

Cortese

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Falanghina

two unique varieties (falanghina beneventana and falanghina flegrea) define campania?s signature white. wines are zesty with peach fruit, minerals, and almond notes.

Valpolicella

the region?s most famous wine, amarone della valpolicella, partially dries grapes to increase concentration in a process called appasimento. corvina is the darling grape of the valpo blend and known for its flavors of cherries and chocolate.

Vinsanto

confusingly, not italy?s vin santo, vinsanto is a greek sweet wine made in a passito style (sun-dried grapes) and known mostly from santorini where it?s made with assyrtiko.

Cinsault

one of the minor grapes found in rhône blends and provençal rosés; cinsault delivers fresh, punchy reds that are just as floral as they are fruity.

Chablis

a wine region in northern burgundy that is as close to champagne as it is to burgundy, producing a leaner style of chardonnay generally with less oak use.

Arinto

an indigenous grape to portugal that produces exceptional, age-worthy whites with the ability to evolve over 7 or more years; revealing flavors of beeswax and nuts.

Cabernet Franc

cabernet franc is the parent grape of both merlot and cabernet sauvignon. complex reds result, with aromas of raspberry, bramble, and bell pepper (pyrazines).

St. Laurent

likely originating in austria, this small berried vine yields cherry flavoured wines that have been compared to a deeper coloured, beefier version of pinot noir.

Zweigelt

austria?s most planted red wine grape and is a cross between blaufränkisch and st. laurent (tastes like pinot noir). resulting wines are bright, tart, and fruity.

Torrontés

argentina?s very own white is actually a group of 3 varieties that are offspring of muscat of alexandria. of the 3 varieties torrontés riojano is considered the best.

Chianti

the world-renowned tuscan, sangiovese-based wine was originally sold in straw-wrapped bottles called fiascos. chianti wines have many classifications by region and aging regime.

Frappato

a rare, fruity find from sicily, frappato bursts with aromas of sweet red berries and incense spice. it?s sometimes blended with nero d?avola to add complexity.

Fernão Pires

a top white grape in portugal known in some areas as maria gomez. wines deliver high intensity floral aromas and medium body. more recently it?s been successfully blended with viognier.

Bobal

this under-the-radar grape happens to be the 2nd most planted red wine in spain. wines are loved for their fruity flavors, soft tannins, and velvety finish.

Prosecco

italy?s most popular sparkling wine is created mostly in veneto and friuli-venezia giulia. the best prosecco wines come from the smaller sub-region of valdobiaddene.

Nerello Mascalese

a rare red sicilian grape producing fine light to medium-bodied red wines reminiscent of pinot noir. the best examples are found growing on the volcanic soils of mount etna.

Friulano

officially called sauvignonasse, this lean, dry, herbal white is often mistaken for sauvignon blanc. you?ll find it in abundance in northeastern italy in friuli-venezia giulia.

Grüner Veltliner

austria?s most important wine is produced in a myriad of styles, the most popular of which are lean, herbaceous, and peppery wines with mouth-watering acidity.

Vermentino

vermentino is an important white of sardinia and tuscany where producers offer both oaked and unoaked styles. it?s also one of the top white blending grapes included in provence rosé (labeled as rolle).

Rkatsiteli

a popular dry white wine in eastern europe all the way to georgia where producers use ancient winemaking techniques to produce intensely flavored oxidative wines.

Sancerre

a regional wine from the loire valley of central france. wines are mostly sauvignon blanc (and very rarely: pinot noir). sauvignon blanc is exceptionally lean and textured from sancerre?s chalky soils.

Silvaner

an undervalued white wine primarily found in germany. silvaner wines deliver boisterous peach-like fruit contrasted by subtle herbal flavors. fans of pinot gris will delight.

Müller-Thurgau

a cross between riesling and madeleine royal, the vines are known to be hyper-productive and thus, most wines are somewhat boring. that said, quality minded wineries offer müller-thurgau with the same complexity as fine riesling.

Aligoté

aligoté is burgundy?s ?other? white grape, more rarely encountered than chardonnay; yielding light, citrusy wines. it is also the traditional base ingredient for the kir cocktail.

Sauternais

a group of rare dessert wines from bordeaux made with sémillon, sauvignon blanc, and muscadelle grapes infected with a special kind of rot called botrytis cinerea that concentrates the grape sugars.

Gra?evina

gra?evina, a.k.a. welschriesling, is the most widely planted white grape in croatia, but confusingly has no link to german riesling. wines are typically neutral and easy drinking.

Bonarda

not the same grape as bonarda from italy, this bonarda (aka charbono or douce noir) grows alongside malbec in argentina where it produces equally fruity, smooth red wines.

viura

the most important white grape of rioja where wines evolve over 10 or more years. in catalonia, viura is called macabeo and is the primary blending grape in cava sparkling wines.

Pinot Noir

pinot noir is the world?s most popular light-bodied red wine. it?s loved for its red fruit, flower, and spice aromas that are accentuated by a long, smooth finish.

Orange Wine

the name is a bit of a misnomer because this wine isn?t made with oranges, but rather white grapes that have been fermented on their skins, much like red wine.

Catarratto

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Chenin Blanc

it?s hard not to love chenin blanc; given its diversity of styles from lean, dry whites and aromatic sparklers, to sweet golden nectars as well as rich brandies.

Vidal

a french hybrid grape, known principally for its use in ice wine making in canada. the vines are ideal for ice wine, as they are incredibly hardy and suited to harsh winters.

White Bordeaux

a white blend that?s dominated by sémillon and sauvignon blanc, along with other grape varieties that are native to the bordeaux region of france.

Tokaji Aszú

a notable hungarian sweet wine made mostly of furmint grapes that are affected by a special rot called botrytis cinerea. the rot concentrates the grape?s sugars and adds distinct aromas of ginger and saffron.

Montepulciano

a popular italian red grape found mostly labeled as montepulciano d?abruzzo. the best examples deliver complex black fruit flavors and a smoky-sweet finish.

Arneis

arneis (?little rascal?) owes its existence, in part, from the efforts of one winemaker, alfredo currado of the vietti family, who brought it back from scarcity.

Agiorgitiko

the most widely planted red grape of greece offers a wide range of styles, from rosé to red. the most exceptional agiorgitiko wines are the full-bodied reds from nemea.

Sauvignon Blanc

a popular and unmistakable white that?s loved for its ?green? herbal flavors and sky high acidity. sauvignon blanc grows nearly everywhere and is produced in a variety of methods resulting in a wide that range from lean to bountiful.

Furmint

furmint is one of the most important hungarian varieties famously used in tokaji aszú dessert wines, but also available as a dry wine in a similar in style to riesling.

Fiano

a fascinating southern italian white with a richer, almost waxy texture that?s known to be age worthy. it?s easy to find labeled as fiano di avellino from campania.

Xarel-lo

one of the three main grapes used in the production of sparkling cava (along with parellada and macabeo). xarel-lo is noted to complement the richness of macabeo (aka viura) with high acidity.

Encruzado

a rare portuguese white wine with exceptional quality and ability to be aged in oak, giving it a similar taste to white burgundy; it shows a distinct, slatey minerality.

Savatiano

greece?s most planted variety is starting to make a comeback as more winemakers focus on quality producing richer, full-bodied white wines reminiscent of chardonnay.

Cserszegi F?szeres

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Airén

spain?s most widely planted grape is primarily used for brandy, save for a few producers who have revitalized the drought-resistant old bush vines for winemaking.

País

the chilean name for the spanish grape, listán prieto. it?s been used mostly for bulk rosé until recently, where quality-minded, natural winemakers are launching tart, high-tannin reds made from país old vines.

Picpoul

a very old french white wine variety that?s recently become increasingly popular for its lip-zapping white wines that pair perfectly with shellfish and fried foods.

Vernaccia di San Gimignano

hailing from tuscany, this white grape is also the varietal in the tuscan regional wine with the same name. wines are bright, citrusy and crisp, and lend a slight bitter note on the finish.

Verdicchio

a fascinating white found primarily in the marche of italy where verdicchio wines are loved for their sweet, peachy aromatics and somewhat oily texture.

Albariño

one of the most delightfully refreshing whites from the iberian peninsula, mostly found growing in cooler areas close to the sea where it attains briny flavours.

Grillo

at home in sicily; the table wines that result are full in body, with a floral, herbal aroma. a major component of sicily?s fortified flagship wine: marsala.

Garganega

an important italian white that?s loved for its lean, dry style that gains rich tangerine and toasted almond notes as it ages. garganega is the main grape of soave (swah-vay.)

Sémillon

an important white grape of bordeaux, including the prized dessert wine, sauternes. wines can be surprisingly rich and when oaked, can taste similar to chardonnay.

Grechetto

the primary grape in italy?s well-known orvieto wines from umbria and lazio. this white fuller in body and if you close your eyes, it will remind you of rosé!

Refosco

a family of closely related varieties found northern italy and neighboring slovenia with genetic links to the grapes of valpolicella. wines range in body and style but usually feature deep color and elevated acidity.

Chasselas

a swiss variety which yields fairly neutral wines that tend to showcase their origin more so than other grapes, based on the terroir in which they grow.

Baga

even though a large proportion of baga is used in portugal?s leading value wine, mateus rosé, the grape can produce age-worthy reds and complex sparkling rosé.

Ribolla Gialla

an ancient white variety from northern italy, bordering slovenia. rarely seen elsewhere, wines are typically light in body and offer fruity, floral aromas, as well as bright acidity.

Gaglioppo

a delicious, rare find from calabria that is the child grape of sangiovese and sibling to sicily?s nerello mascalese. wines often deliver dusty fruit flavors.

Carménère

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Dolcetto

in piedmont, dolcetto?s home, the name means ?little sweet one.? funny enough, wines are generally tart with loads black fruit flavors and occasionally aggressive tannins.

Rosé

rosé was once only thought of as fruity and cloying; these dry and mineral driven pink wines (that contain a plethora of grapes) have proven that rosé can be serious. seriously delicious.

Verdejo

an herbaceous white wine that grows almost exclusively in the rueda region of spain. not to be confused with verdelho, a portuguese grape used in primarily in madeira.

Moschofilero

a richly aromatic white wine that hails from the small region of mantíneia, close to tripoli in peloponnese, greece.

Colombard

this fairly neutral grape, once preferred solely for brandy production (notably armagnac) is planted globally. generally blended with other grapes, easy-drinking table wines result.

Pinot Gris

pinot gris (aka pinot grigio) is a pinkish grape mutation of pinot noir. it?s famously known for zesty white wines, but can also be used for rosé. look to northern italy, oregon, and alsace for benchmark examples.

Trebbiano Toscano

one of the top wine grapes of italy and france (where it?s called ugni blanc). that said, you?d never realize it because trebbiano is mostly used in brandy and balsamic vinegar production!

Bandol

bandol is a tiny appellation within provence, france that is most famous for its rich, peppery, and meaty red wines made almost exclusively with mourvèdre.

Marsanne

a primary blending grape in white rhône blends that also include roussanne, grenache blanc and sometimes viognier. a great alternative to chardonnay.

Sagrantino

a rare, central-italian red found mostly in umbria. it?s recently been noted to contain some of the highest polyphenol (antioxidants) levels of of any red wine.

Blaufränkisch

rich black fruit is contrasted by peppery flavors and boisterous acidity in this food-friendly austrian red. blaufränkisch is a parent grape of both gamay and zweigelt.

Barbera

barolo is what everyone talks about from piedmont, but barbera is what everyone drinks! this everyday red can be found in vineyards around the world.

Verdelho

this portuguese native is one of the four key grapes used in the production of madeira; it is found little elsewhere, though select australian producers are making quality wines.

White Rhône

the rare white wines of the rhône valley offer a terrific alternative for chardonnay lovers. wines are typically a blend of marsanne and roussanne with a little viognier and grenache blanc thrown in.

Roussanne

an intriguing, rare full-bodied white found mostly in southern france where it?s blended into white blends with grenache blanc, marsanne and sometimes viognier.

Chardonnay

one of the world?s most popular grapes, chardonnay is made in a wide range of styles from lean, sparkling blanc de blancs to rich, creamy white wines aged in oak.

Nero d?Avola

sicily?s most important red wine variety is often likened to cabernet sauvignon due to its full-bodied style and flavors of black cherry and tobacco.

Norton

an american hybrid of vitis vinifera and vitis aestivalis that shows excellent promise for winemaking in america?s midwest. wines are often rich with both fruity and savory flavors.

Brunello di Montalcino

brunello di montalcino is of italy?s top regional red wines, first labeled as such in 1865 by biondi-santi. wines are made with a special clone of sangiovese.

Nebbiolo

one of italy?s most important red wine varieties made famous by the barolo region of piedmont where wines offer delicate aromas accompanied by strong tannins.

Malbec

argentina?s most important variety came by way of france, where it?s commonly called côt (sounds like ?coat?). wines are loved for their rich, dark fruit flavors and smooth chocolatey finish.

Mencía

a red variety from the iberian peninsula (spain and portugal) that?s quickly developing a following. it?s loved for its heady aromatics and potential to age.

Pinot Blanc

pinot blanc is the white grape mutation of pinot noir. it?s found mostly in germany and northern italy where wines are refreshing, peachy, and dry.

Concord

an american grape of the vitis labrusca species from concord, massachusetts; it is the most planted grape in new york, but used more for juice and flavoring than winemaking.

Carignan

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Priorat

a spanish regional wine blend known largely for its full, dusty red wines made primarily from grenache and carignan. the best age a minimum of five years before release and some include merlot and cabernet sauvignon for additional complexity.

Tempranillo

spain?s top red wine, made famous by rioja, where wines are classified (in part) by how long they age in oak. what?s amazing, is a well-made tempranillo ages for over 20 years.

Red Bordeaux

a red blend that?s dominated by cabernet sauvignon and merlot, along with several other grape varieties native to the bordeaux region of france.

Negroamaro

a red wine that grows in abundance in puglia but almost nowhere else; producing wines with rich black fruit flavors with a distinct finish of dried herbs.

Gewürztraminer

treasured for its intense floral aromas, gewürztraminer has thrived for centuries around germany. quality examples are ageworthy, but most are best enjoyed in their youth to preserve acidity.

Cabernet Sauvignon

the world?s most popular red wine grape is a natural cross between cabernet franc and sauvignon blanc from bordeaux, france. cabernet sauvignon is loved for its high concentration and age worthiness.

Corvina

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Syrah

a rich, powerful, and sometimes meaty red wine that originated in the rhône valley of france. syrah is the most planted grape of australia where they call it shiraz.

Red Rhône

gsm stands for grenache, syrah, and mourvèdre ? three important grapes grown in the côtes du rhône region of france. today, this blend is produced throughout the world and is loved for its complex red fruit flavors and age-worthy potential.

Barolo

piedmont?s most famous red wine is made with 100% nebbiolo grapes. its translucent brick-red color, deceptively light body, and floral aromas contrast its dense tannin structure.

Castelão

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Red Rioja

spain?s most famous regional wine featuring tempranillo grapes. wines are known for their savory, dusty flavors and ability to age. rioja is one of few european winemaking zones that enlists the use of american oak barrels.

Touriga Franca

a northern portuguese native, used mainly in port wine production, as well as blended table wines of the dão. wines are deep in colour, with floral, red-fruit flavours.

Mourvèdre

a deeply bold, smoky red wine found in abundance in central spain and southern france (where it?s known as mourvèdre). monastrell is the ?m? in the rhône / gsm blend.

Viognier

a rich, oily white wine that originated in the northern rhône and is rapidly growing in popularity in california, australia, and beyond. wines are often age in oak to deliver chardonnay-like richness.

Petit verdot

considered a minor blending grape in bordeaux, petit verdot has shown promise as a single-varietal wine in warmer climates where it makes smooth full-bodied reds.

Godello

a rare grape with great potential from the iberian peninsula delivers mouth-watering flavors of briny grapefruit. the best examples offer smoky minerality.

Assyrtiko

native to santorini, assyrtiko is a rare grape in terms of vineyard area, but is quickly picking up acreage throughout greece. noted for its texture, acidity, and minerality.

Malvasia Fina

malvasia fina, or boal, as it is known on the island of madeira is one of the four main grapes used in madeira production. in table wines, full aromatics and alcohol are of note.

Aglianico

if nebbiolo is king of northern italy, then aglianico is king of the south. a wine with incredible quality, and a unique savory flavor that?s best enjoyed aged.

Sangiovese

italy?s most planted wine variety and the pride of the tuscan regional wine, chianti. sangiovese is a sensitive grape that takes on different stylistic expressions based on where it grows.

Alicante Bouschet

a rare type of grape that has both red skins and red flesh, known as a teinturier. created when french botanist, henri bouschet, crossed grenache with petit bouschet.

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VineTutor's Wine Grape Mega-List

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