Ever wonder what kind of wine is in the bottle with the French label, or any European wine label for that matter? You know it’s either white or red because you can see the color through the bottle, but is it a Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, maybe a Pinot Noir or Sauvignon Blanc . . . ?
It may seem like a mystery, but with a little bit of info we just might be able to find our favorite wine.
So when you buy a California Merlot, Shiraz from Australia, or a Sauvignon Blanc from South Africa you know what’s in the bottle. These New World (United States, Australia, South America, South Africa) wines have the name of the grape variety on the label. This is easy, right?
Old World wines from Europe, Spain, Portugal, etc. have the name of the wine region where the wine is produced on the label and sometimes the name of the chateau (or vineyard). Huh? So what’s in the bottle……..
Simplicity here is the only way to make this post short and sweet. So here is a list of a few of the most popular wine varieties with a few Old World wines made from the same grape.
Sauvignon Blanc (white wine) — Sancerre, Pouilly-Fume, white Bordeaux (often blended with Semillon).
Chardonnay (white wine) — Chablis, white Burgundy, Pouilly Fuisse.
Pinot Noir (red wine) — is the major grape grown in Burgundy.
Syrah (red wine) — Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage, Cote Rotie.
Cabernet Sauvignon (red wine) — red Bordeaux (it’s part of a blend with Merlot and sometimes Cabernet Franc). St. Emilion, Pauillac regions produce some of the best Bordeaux.
Sangiovese (red wine) — Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano.
There is certainly a lot more than meets the eye on this subject, but when you see an Old World label with the some of the above information on it you just may be happy to find your favorite wine.
If you have any questions please feel free to ask.