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White Wine

Learn about white wine — the range of styles, how it’s made and more ...

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What are the types of white wine?

From lean and crisp to oaky and buttery, white wine comes in an array of styles and is produced in almost every wine region of the world. Although only about 25 pale-skinned grapes make the majority of the white wine produced, hundreds of native varieties are important not only to local culture, but to the diversity of the global wine world. White wine styles range from a simple and refreshing aperitif to a robust accompaniment to a hearty meal and some of the best can age for decades.

How is white wine made?

To preserve freshness, aromatics and primary fruit flavors, white wines are often fermented at cooler temperatures than reds. Unlike red winemaking, the colorless juice is not typically left in contact with the grape skins during the fermentation process. The winemaker has the choice to encourage or prevent malolactic fermentation, which turns the tart acidity of grape juice into the softer, creamier flavors of wine. Another important decision when making white wine is whether and how to use oak—the barrels’ age, provenance and time holding the wine all help to determine the final style, in terms of both flavor and texture.

What gives white wine its color?

White wines can vary in color from nearly clear lemon-green to medium gold to pale orange or almost light brown, depending on grape variety, winemaking methods and age.

How do you serve white wine?

Ideally for storing white wine in any long-term sense, it should be at cellar temperature, about 55F. For serving, cool white wine down to about 45F to 55F. (Most refrigerators are colder than this.) As for drinking white wines, the best white wine glasses have a stem and a narrow bowl large enough to allow swirling without spilling.

How long does white wine last?

Opened, a bottle of white wine will stay fresh in the refrigerator for a couple of days to a week, maybe longer. Unopened, white wines stay good for one year to, in some cases, several decades. Assessing how long to hold on to a bottle is a complicated science. If you are planning to strategically store white wine, seek the advice of a wine professional.

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  • Trimbach Cuvee Frederic-Emile Riesling 1992
    Riesling from Alsace, France
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    • Trimbach Reserve Personnelle Pinot Gris 1992
      Pinot Gris/Grigio from Alsace, France
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      • J.J. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spatlese 1992
        Riesling from Mosel, Germany
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        • Donnhoff Oberhauser Bruke Riesling Spatlese 1992 Front Label
          Donnhoff Oberhauser Bruke Riesling Spatlese 1992
          Riesling from Nahe, Germany
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          • Domaine Leflaive Bienvenues Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 1992
            Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
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            • Domaine Leflaive Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru 1992
              Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
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            • Domaine des Baumard Cremant de Loire Carte Turquoise 1992  Front Label
              Domaine des Baumard Cremant de Loire Carte Turquoise 1992
              Other White Blends from Loire, France
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              • Domaine aux Moines Savennieres Roches aux Moines 1992 Front Label
                Domaine aux Moines Savennieres Roches aux Moines 1992
                Chenin Blanc from Anjou, Loire, France
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                • Jean-Paul Droin Chablis Grenouille Grand Cru 1992 Front Label
                  Jean-Paul Droin Chablis Grenouille Grand Cru 1992
                  Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
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                  • Duckhorn Sauvignon Blanc 1992  Front Label
                    Duckhorn Sauvignon Blanc 1992
                    Sauvignon Blanc from Napa Valley, California
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                    • Barbeito Frasqueira Verdelho 1992 Front Label
                      Barbeito Frasqueira Verdelho 1992
                      Verdelho from Madeira, Portugal
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                      • Barbeito Frasqueira Sercial 1992 Front Label
                        Barbeito Frasqueira Sercial 1992
                        Other White Wine from Madeira, Portugal
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                        • Barbeito Boal Frasqueira 1992 Front Label
                          Barbeito Boal Frasqueira 1992
                          Other White Wine from Madeira, Portugal
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                          • Jean-Paul Droin Valmur Chablis Grand Cru 1992 Front Label
                            Jean-Paul Droin Valmur Chablis Grand Cru 1992
                            Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
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                            • Colin-Deleger Les Chaumees 1992 Front Label
                              Colin-Deleger Les Chaumees 1992
                              Chardonnay from Chassagne-Montrachet, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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