Wine Facts

From how to distinguish wine notes to how to choose organic wine, wine facts will give you the down-low on all things vino.


Champagne may seem simple — bubbly, boozy, bold — but there's a complicated path from vine to glass, as our new FoodStuff podcast explains.

Might we one day see a Burgundy region sans pinot noir or a Bordeaux without cabernets? A new study shows how global warming temperatures affect grape harvests.

As the old saying goes, appearances can be deceiving. Most of us use price, the label on the bottle and vintage to prejudge a wine's quality. But do expensive wines actually taste better, or is it all just sour grapes?

Wine lovers are sometimes called snobby, in part because they seem to speak a language of their own. Yet, their beloved beverage likely had some humble beginnings.

Red wine aficionados happily drank up the news that their favorite libation was actually good for them. But how have those oft-touted studies held up?

No time to visit a wine shop? Why not buy online from the large number of merchants that now have a Web site? Learn about buying wine online.

No cellar in your fifth-floor apartment? Don't worry. Every home has a place where wine can be stored. Learn about wine storage here.

If the last glass of wine from a bottle tastes better than the first, then chances are it will improve with age. Learn what wines should be stored here.

If you live next door to a winery, great. If you don't, where's the best place to grab a bottle? Learn the best place to buy wine here.

As in any good partnership, food and wine should complement each other, rather than be at war. Learn how to pair food with wine here.

When pairing food and wine it is necessary to consider the seasonings in the dish and how it was cooked. Learn how to pair wines with savory foods here.

Some sweet wines need not be paired with food at all because they are almost a dessert in themselves. Learn how to pair wine with sweet food.

Cabernet Franc is usually content to play second fiddle to other grape varieties. Learn about Cabernet Franc grapes.

Loved by both wine drinkers and winemakers, Chardonnay has few competitors for the title of world's finest white grape. Learn more about Chardonnay grapes.

Bad Chenin Blanc is truly dreadful. Great Chenin Blanc is truly sublime, and capable of lasting for years. Learn more about Chenin Blanc grapes here.

Fortification of wines originated to preserve wines in warm climates, or to stabilize them for long sea journeys. Learn more about fortified wines here.

A wild gypsy of a grape, Grenache can make everything from light, refreshing rosés to herby and long-lived reds. Learn more about Grenache grapes.

Malbec grapes present very different faces depending on which part of the world you're in. Learn more about Malbec grapes here.

Soft, plummy and yummy, like Cabernet Sauvignon without the pain. At least that's what Merlots are supposed to taste like. Learn more about Merlot grapes.

One of the friendliest grapes you'll find, the versatile Muscat makes lovely grapey whites wherever it's grown. Learn more about Muscat grapes.

Nebbiolo grapes are arguably the sulkiest of all grape varieties. Learn more about Nebbiolo grapes.

Fat and spicy, or crisp and light? Pinot Gris/Grigio can turn its hand to both styles with aplomb. Learn more about Pinot Gris/Grigio grapes.

Feral, fruity, earthy, velvety in texture — nothing else matches top-class Pinot Noir. Learn more about Pinot Noir grapes.

Sangiovese grapes are the grapes behind Chianti and Brunello di Montalcino and are grown throughout Italy. Learn more about Sangiovese grapes here.

Semillon, the often misunderstood grape, is behind some of the world's finest white wines. Learn more about Semillon grapes.