By Preston Smith/Sept. 7, 2021 12:25 pm EDT
The world of wine is incredibly vast, and it stretches far past the reaches of your local wine seller. There are questions of which temperature you should drink certain wines at and even if certain glasses can change the flavor of your wine. Some people even believe white wine can make you look older. What are the true factors that make what it is, though?
According to Decanter, the type of grape used during a wine’s production is the biggest factor that affects its taste and overall end result. The type of grape used also affects its sweetness level, its color, and its acidity level. “Other conditions, namely climate, weather, sunlight, water, warmth and nutrients also affect the taste of the wine,” Decanter explains. In fact, climate and region can be so important that nearly all of the world’s vineyards fall between 30 and 50 degrees latitude.
Now, you may be wondering what this means for someone who is just starting to get into drinking wine. A beginner doesn’t need to know anything too extensive, but knowing that locations can affect a wine’s taste is helpful for picking out different bottles at the store, as they always say where they come from. If you need a little extra help choosing, though, we’ve got you covered.
These two wines lead the White Wine 101 course
Like any family of wines, white wines vary greatly in their taste. They can be “herbaceous,” dry, bold, light, and even sweet (via Greatist), and each of these not only tastes different but also pairs well with different foods.
If you’re going to drink white wine for the first time, you might want to start out with a chardonnay. According to Greatist, chardonnay is the most popular and most produced white wine in the world, and it has different flavors and textures based on its region of production. Where European chardonnay is fruitier and offers citrus notes, Californian chardonnay is creamier in texture and has a smoother, fuller taste. This is also a wine you’re likely to have heard of, so it’s a great stepping stone into the white wine market.
If you’re invited to a dinner party and want to bring something, you can always depend on a pinot grigio. This white wine is on the fruitier, more acidic side like European chardonnay, and because of its light flavor, it goes well with many foods, meaning you won’t need to stress about bringing the perfect wine pairing.
These two wines will make you feel extra sweet and bubbly
If you want a white wine outside of chardonnay and pinot grigio, you’ve still got plenty of options. According to Best Wine Club, there are around 40 different types of white wine, but we won’t overwhelm you with all of them.
If you’re looking for something bubbly like champagne, Best Wine Club recommends reaching for prosecco. This white wine is crisp, and it pairs well with nearly all Italian food. It’s light and bubbly but not without a unique flavor. It’s all-around enjoyable and one to keep on your radar.
While all of these options have been good so far, we haven’t touched on sweet wines yet. If you’re looking for something sweeter, you’ll want to grab a moscato. Best Wine Club describe moscato as having “a musky, grapefruit aroma,” and they add, “Expect lively, sweet flavors of peach and orange blossom, which can be enjoyed as a sparkling, still, or dessert wine.” Moscato also has lower alcohol levels than other white wines, making it perfect for quiet evenings.
Ultimately, if you’re a beginner white wine drinker, you should reach for one — or more — of the following four varieties: pinot grigio, chardonnay, prosecco, and moscato. These four wines will make you feel luxurious, and they taste exciting and delicious.
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