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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 and styles 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 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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  • Atlas Peak Chardonnay 1998 Front Label
    Atlas Peak Chardonnay 1998
    Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
    • WE88
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  • Simi Sauvignon Blanc 1998
    Sauvignon Blanc from Sonoma County, California
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    • Wente Riesling 1998
      Riesling from California
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        9 49
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      • Longridge Hawkes Bay Chardonnay 1998
        Chardonnay from Hawkes Bay, New Zealand
        • WS88
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        12 49
        10 99
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      • Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay 1998
        Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
        • RP90
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        34 99
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      • Matanzas Creek Sonoma County Chardonnay 1998
        Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
        • W&S93
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        Currently Unavailable $30.14
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        33 49
        30 14
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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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        • 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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          • Alexander Valley Vineyards Chardonnay (half-bottle) 1998
            Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
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              Currently Unavailable $9.99
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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 $13.94
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              15 49
              13 94
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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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              • Pierre Sparr Reserve Riesling 1998
                Riesling from Alsace, France
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                  16 99
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                • Firestone Johannisburg Riesling 1998
                  Riesling from California
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                    Currently Unavailable $9.99
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                    9 99
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                  • Columbia Crest Sauvignon Blanc 1998 Front Label
                    Columbia Crest Sauvignon Blanc 1998
                    Sauvignon Blanc from Columbia Valley, Washington
                    • WE88
                    • WS86
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                    9 99
                    8 99
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                  • J.J. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Kabinett Riesling 1998 Front Label
                    J.J. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Kabinett Riesling 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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                    • Cecchi Orvieto 1998 Front Label
                      Cecchi Orvieto 1998
                      Other White Blends from Italy
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                        Currently Unavailable $1.99
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                        9 99
                        1 99
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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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                        Currently Unavailable $16.99
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                        16 99
                        16 99
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                      • Sanford Sauvignon Blanc 1998
                        Sauvignon Blanc from Central Coast, California
                        • RP87
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                      • Coppo Gavi La Rocca 1998 Front Label
                        Coppo Gavi La Rocca 1998
                        Cortese from Piedmont, Italy
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                        • Bulletin Place Chardonnay 1998 Front Label
                          Bulletin Place Chardonnay 1998
                          Chardonnay from Australia
                          • WS85
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                          7 99
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                        • Sokol Blosser Estate Pinot Gris 1998 Front Label
                          Sokol Blosser Estate Pinot Gris 1998
                          Pinot Gris/Grigio from Willamette Valley, Oregon
                          • WS86
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                          19 99
                          19 99
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                        • Callaway Chenin Blanc Dry 1998 Front Label
                          Callaway Chenin Blanc Dry 1998
                          Chenin Blanc from California
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                            10 49
                            10 49
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                          • Kunde Viognier 1998
                            Viognier from Sonoma County, California
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                              23 99
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                            • Villa Maria Private Bin Riesling 1998
                              Riesling from New Zealand
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                                13 99
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                              • Villa Maria Private Bin Chardonnay 1998
                                Chardonnay from New Zealand
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                                  Currently Unavailable $10.99
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                                  10 99
                                  10 99
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