How Different Grapes Change The Flavor Of Wine

Grapes Change The Flavor Of Wine

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Philadelphia, PAWine Types - Wine is considered as the best alcoholic beverage that's consumed in most countries around the world. It's known as a healthy drink because it contains natural ingredients that are beneficial for the body, and at the same time, help in increasing one's energy levels.

How Grapes Change The Flavor of Wine

Moreover, did you know that different grapes can alter the flavor of the wine? Read on to gain more information on this topic.

Red WineRed Grapes

Red grapes tend to have a sweeter taste over black grapes and other varieties.

The following are some types of red grapes:

  • Montepulciano – You might be hearing this type of wine for the first time and ask yourself, "What is Montepulciano wine?" This Italian wine is known for being very tasty and for being an excellent value for the money. The reason that this Italian wine is so popular all over the world is that the taste has stayed the same throughout the years, and there are not too many varieties of this wine. Aged Montepulciano red wine tends to be much thinner and has a light fruity taste, with less tannin. It's similar to other red wines but very different in texture.
  • Merlot - Merlot has a deep purple color to it, and its taste is distinctively sweet. These grapes can produce a high amount of alcohol. They're usually used in combination with Cabernet, making an overall velvety wine. Merlot also has low levels of tannin and acidity. This type of grape ages very well.
  • Pinot Noir - This type of grape has thin skin but is very difficult to grow because it's prone to rot. Pinot is low on tannin and can have different flavors after production, like raspberries, cherries, and violets.
  • Syrah – This is otherwise known as Shiraz, but the main difference is the location of their growth. It has a thick skin and produces wines with high levels of tannin. This is often in combination with Grenache. A typical note of this type of grape is black pepper.
  • Gamay - This is a grape that grows in France. Gamay can produce low-tannin wines with fruity flavors, such as strawberries and cherries. Unfortunately, it ripens early.

White WineGreen & White Grapes

White grapes also have different aromas that can vary in taste, depending on what kind of wine you are making.

The following are some types of Green & White grapes:
  • Chardonnay – This type of grapes is what's most popular for wine making. It's able to properly grow in different locations. It also has a neutral style that lets winemakers use it as a blanc canvas and combine it with other grapes and flavors, thus producing a variety of tasty wines, from dry, to sweet, to sparkling.
  • Sauvignon Blanc – This is another popular white grape type, and which is mostly used for making dry wines. It has an aromatic character and is very acidic, but also offers some flavors like gooseberry, green peppers, and vegetal notes.
  • Riesling – This usually comes from countries like France and Germany. The flavors it produces include lime, apricot, and some floral notes, and it is overall highly acidic as well.
  • Verdicchio – This grape type is grown in Italy and is famous for producing high acidity wines that have citrusy flavors. It's mostly used to create cheaper Italian wines.
  • Chenin Blanc – It has high acidity levels, and produces wines with a sweet note to them. It can be used for dry and sparkling wines. Chenin Blanc is mostly grown in South Africa and France.

There are some other factors that are included in the selection of how the grapes should be used in making wine, such as the flavor that a specific kind of white grape has. This type of grape also has different properties that are important to the taste of the wine that you are making. Some people may have their own preferences as to how they prefer to use white grapes.

Black Grapes

It's interesting to note that black grapes can have a taste that is close to that of red grapes. They have very thin rinds, and have a lot of seeds inside their center. Black grapes are commonly used in producing table wines.  

When used for red wine, the flavor will become sweeter and darker, and the aroma will be deeper. On the other hand, black grapes, when used in combination with white grapes for white wine, will produce a lighter flavor with a touch of acidity. The wine will not have the same complexity and full body as a white wine made from other kinds of grapes. 

Some of the characteristics include a smoky flavor, plum or berry overtones, and a lot of tannin. These characteristics can be subtle or they can be very pronounced, depending on the grapes combinations with other ingredients. If you want a very smoky taste in your wine, it would be best to use black grapes.  

It's worth noting that there are some characteristics that cannot be controlled when growing black grapes. One of these is the ripeness of the grapes. You may either get an early ripeness or an exhausted taste after fermentation. You may also notice that the skin of the grapes will peel easily, and there will be visible divisions when you tap the grapes from their stems. 

Another characteristic is the amount of tannin in the juice. This means that the wine will have more alcohol when it is unfiltered.


Different wines have different tastes, and, sometimes, when it comes to picking out the perfect wine for yourself, you need to consider the fact that the taste can change depending on the kind of grape that is used for your wine. Although some grapes are used as their original variety, many times, wine experts will often recommend using other types of grapes instead of their original varieties for wines. Even if the wine is from the same grape type, the taste may vary slightly depending on how different the varieties are.

While the abovementioned varieties can be used in making wine, they have different effects on the taste of the wine that you are drinking.

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