There are LOTS of kinds of Wine. Like, lots….and lots. But there are certainly types of wine that we see commonly. The most popular are definitely (probably?) Merlot and Chardonnay. Merlot is red and Chardonnay is white. What more do you need? Well, a good Shiraz to start with!
Sidetrack anecdote – My husband (this is Casey btw, not Crystal, so don’t go making fun of Von for this), was sent into the gas station to grab a bottle of RED wine. Yes I was shopping classy at the gas station, but that’s beside the point. I instructed him to find a “CABERNET” because I was in a NO MERLOT kind of mood. I watch him through the window as I had a clear view. I see him carefully studying the small selection. I see him zero in. I see him reach down and grab…..WHITE WINE. Oy vey. So not only did he get the wine wrong, he manages to even get the COLOR wrong. When he returned to the truck I asked him sweetly “wth mate?” and he says “See! ‘Chardonnay’, says it right there.” First, my husband should know I prefer red wine, but more importantly I hadn’t said Chardonnay, I said Cabernet. They rhymed, I guess he got credit for that, and I drank it anyway.
Moral of this story, with a little wine knowledge, my husband would have known that I had initially asked for a red wine, and had there not been a Cab (that’s short for Cabernet if you didn’t know) available, then he could have picked a suitable replacement. So let’s start there –
This is full bodied RED (not white, hehe) wine, which also happens to be the most popular wine in the whole wide world. Congrats. It contains bold tannins and persistent finish due to higher levels of alcohol.
Pairs well with: lamb, beef, smoked meats, and cheezits.
This popular wine is made from a dark blue grape that is one of the primary grapes used in Bordeaux wines. It is medium-full bodied and tends to have a higher alcohol level. This wine is not considered “dry” (so do we say it’s wet?), and has a medium acidity. Interestingly, sales of Merlot dropped 2% following the movie “Sideways” in 2004, where the lead declares “NO MERLOT!!!!”.
Pairs well with: Pizza, BBQ Chicken, Rack of Lamb,and Filet Mignon.
SYRAH or SHIRAZ
“Sear-ah” or “YUMMMMM”
This is a full bodied, drier red wine. You may be familiar with our current Syrah, the Swanky Devil. Our crowd pleaser is also an award winner, and gosh is he good lookin. This wine is often described as earthy, and has good aging potential. It ages like a fine wine!
Pairs well with: Beef, white cheddar, smoked meats, and toddler bed-time.
Another red here. This one is spicy, exotic, fruity, and fun at parties. It can be medium to full bodied with a medium length finish. Not to be confused by it’s cousin “White Zinfandel” (which is actually pink).
Pairs well with: Chicken, pork, Thai food, and spodie.
This red wine is lighter bodied, fruity (cherry, cranberry), a higher acidity, and softer smooth finish.
Pairs well with: Chicken, pork, duck, creamy sauces, and nutty cheeses.
This is the white wine I ended up with, but that’s ok, because it’s great. It’s low on sweetness, fruity, and bold. This white wine also has hints of citrus and tropical fruits. It is dry and full-bodied and ages well. Try our Liquid Lunch Chardonnay!
Pairs well with: Lobster, crab, mushrooms, lunch, and distracted husbands.
This is another popular white wine. Very fruity and acidic with hints of honeydew and kiwi. It is often described as tart and greeny, (you know, like fresh cut grass).
Pairs will with: fish, Vietnamese, goat and nutty cheeses.
Pinot Gris or Grigio
High in acidity, low on fruity boldness, this white wine was a surprise to me (a delightful one) when I first started learning about wines. It has delicate citrus and floral notes, is on the drier side, and is very light.
Pairs well with: Salad, mild cheeses, bitter flavors, and handsome wine class instructors.
This white wine if very fruity (citrus and peach) and has high acidity. It can be sweet or very dry, just like my friend from my home town who drank it on the regular.
Pairs well with: Chicken, pork, turkey, German, Indian, and fondue.
So there is quick crash course on some popular types of wine. However, there are over 10,000 types of wine grapes, and styles from all over the world! So get drinking!!