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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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  • Chalk Hill Chardonnay 1998 Front Label
    Chalk Hill Chardonnay 1998
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
    • WE91
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  • Trimbach Riesling 1998
    Riesling from Alsace, France
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    • Flora Springs Family Select Chardonnay 1998 Front Label
      Flora Springs Family Select Chardonnay 1998
      Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
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        Currently Unavailable $19.99
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        26 99
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      • Stonestreet Sonoma Chardonnay 1998 Front Label
        Stonestreet Sonoma Chardonnay 1998
        Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
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        • Atlas Peak Chardonnay 1998 Front Label
          Atlas Peak Chardonnay 1998
          Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
          • WE88
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          19 99
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        • Simi Sauvignon Blanc 1998
          Sauvignon Blanc from Sonoma County, California
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            Currently Unavailable $15.49
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          • Wente Riesling 1998
            Riesling from California
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              9 49
              9 49
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            • Longridge Hawkes Bay Chardonnay 1998
              Chardonnay from Hawkes Bay, New Zealand
              • WS88
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              Currently Unavailable $7.99
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              7 99
              7 99
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            • Coldstream Hills Sauvignon Blanc 1998 Front Label
              Coldstream Hills Sauvignon Blanc 1998
              Sauvignon Blanc from Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia
              • WE88
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              19 49
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            • Dopff & Irion Gewurztraminer 1998 Front Label
              Dopff & Irion Gewurztraminer 1998
              Gewurztraminer from Alsace, France
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                Currently Unavailable $17.99
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                17 99
                17 99
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              • Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay 1998
                Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
                • RP90
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                Currently Unavailable $37.34
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                41 49
                37 34
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              • Matanzas Creek Sonoma County Chardonnay 1998
                Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
                • W&S93
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                Currently Unavailable $38.24
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                42 49
                38 24
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              • Villa Maria Private Bin Sauvignon Blanc 1998 Front Label
                Villa Maria Private Bin Sauvignon Blanc 1998
                Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand
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                • Erath Dry Gewurztraminer 1998
                  Gewurztraminer from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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                    11 49
                    7 99
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                  • Geyser Peak Riesling 1998 Front Label
                    Geyser Peak Riesling 1998
                    Riesling from Sonoma County, California
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                      Currently Unavailable $12.49
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                      12 49
                      12 49
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                    • Columbia Crest Estate Series Chardonnay 1998 Front Label
                      Columbia Crest Estate Series Chardonnay 1998
                      Chardonnay from Columbia Valley, Washington
                      • WS90
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                      Currently Unavailable $14.99
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                      15 99
                      14 99
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                    • Prager Smaragd Hollerin Riesling 1998 Front Label
                      Prager Smaragd Hollerin Riesling 1998
                      Riesling from Austria
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                        40
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                      • Alice White Semillon-Chardonnay 1998 Front Label
                        Alice White Semillon-Chardonnay 1998
                        Semillon from Australia
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                        • Firestone Johannisburg Riesling 1998
                          Riesling from California
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                          • J.J. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett 1998 Front Label
                            J.J. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett 1998
                            Riesling from Mosel, Germany
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                              Currently Unavailable $22.49
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                              22 49
                              22 49
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                            • Ponzi Pinot Gris 1998 Front Label
                              Ponzi Pinot Gris 1998
                              Pinot Gris/Grigio from Willamette Valley, Oregon
                              • WS87
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                              16 49
                              15 99
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                            • Zind-Humbrecht Pinot d'Alsace 1998 Front Label
                              Zind-Humbrecht Pinot d'Alsace 1998
                              Other White Blends from Alsace, France
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                                26 99
                                26 99
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                              • Erath Vintage Select Chardonnay 1998 Front Label
                                Erath Vintage Select Chardonnay 1998
                                Chardonnay from Willamette Valley, Oregon
                                • WS85
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                                21 99
                                21 99
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                              • Sanford Sauvignon Blanc 1998
                                Sauvignon Blanc from Central Coast, California
                                • RP87
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                                17 99
                                17 99
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                              • Bulletin Place Chardonnay 1998 Front Label
                                Bulletin Place Chardonnay 1998
                                Chardonnay from Australia
                                • WS85
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                                8 99
                                8 99
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