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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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  • Rhys Vineyards Alpine Vineyard Chardonnay 2006 Front Label
    Rhys Vineyards Alpine Vineyard Chardonnay 2006
    Chardonnay from Santa Cruz Mountains, California
    • RP92
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  • Von Kesselstatt Piesporter Goldtropfchen Kabinett 2006 Front Label
    Von Kesselstatt Piesporter Goldtropfchen Kabinett 2006
    Riesling from Mosel, Germany
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  • Dr. Loosen Erdener Treppchen Auslese (375ML half-bottle) 2006 Front Label
    Dr. Loosen Erdener Treppchen Auslese (375ML half-bottle) 2006
    Riesling from Mosel, Germany
    • W&S91
    • RP91
    • WS90
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  • Freie Weingartner Smaragd Trocken Wachau Terassen Gruner Veltliner 2006 Front Label
    Freie Weingartner Smaragd Trocken Wachau Terassen Gruner Veltliner 2006
    Gruner Veltliner from Austria
    • WS91
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    22
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  • La Crema Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2006 Front Label
    La Crema Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2006
    Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
    • W&S93
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  • Brocard Bougros Chablis 2006 Front Label
    Brocard Bougros Chablis 2006
    Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
    • WS90
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    90
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  • J Vineyards Russian River Pinot Gris 2006 Front Label
    J Vineyards Russian River Pinot Gris 2006
    Pinot Gris/Grigio from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • CG91
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    20
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  • Jordan Chardonnay 2006 Front Label
    Jordan Chardonnay 2006
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
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    • Carl Graff Kabinett Riesling 2006 Front Label
      Carl Graff Kabinett Riesling 2006
      Riesling from Mosel, Germany
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      • Excelsior Chardonnay 2006 Front Label
        Excelsior Chardonnay 2006
        Chardonnay from South Africa
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        • Baron zu Knyphausen Baron K Riesling Kabinett 2006 Front Label
          Baron zu Knyphausen Baron K Riesling Kabinett 2006
          Riesling from Rheingau, Germany
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          • Indaba Chenin Blanc 2006 Front Label
            Indaba Chenin Blanc 2006
            Chenin Blanc from South Africa
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              Currently Unavailable $6.99
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              11
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            • Clos Pegase Mitsuko's Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2006 Front Label
              Clos Pegase Mitsuko's Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2006
              Sauvignon Blanc from Carneros, California
              • W&S90
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            • Brocard Petite Chablis 2006 Front Label
              Brocard Petite Chablis 2006
              Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
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              • Swanson Pinot Grigio 2006 Front Label
                Swanson Pinot Grigio 2006
                Pinot Gris/Grigio from Napa Valley, California
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                • Bouchaine Estate Chardonnay 2006 Front Label
                  Bouchaine Estate Chardonnay 2006
                  Chardonnay from Carneros, California
                  • WE90
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                • Sebastiani Chardonnay 2006
                  Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
                  • CG88
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                • Caves de Chablis Chablis 2006
                  Chardonnay from Chablis, Burgundy, France
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                  • Chateau Ste. Michelle Horse Heaven Late Harvest Chenin (Half-Bottle) 2006
                    Chenin Blanc from Columbia Valley, Washington
                    • WS92
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                  • Chateau Olivier Blanc 2006
                    Bordeaux White Blends from Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
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                    • Terra d'Oro Pinot Grigio 2006
                      Pinot Gris/Grigio from Central Coast, California
                      • WE89
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                    • Redcliffe Sauvignon Blanc 2006
                      Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, New Zealand
                        3.9 7 Ratings
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                      • Betts & Scholl Hermitage Blanc 2006
                        Rhone White Blends from Hermitage, Rhone, France
                        • WS92
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                      • De Wetshof Sauvignon Blanc 2006
                        Sauvignon Blanc from South Africa
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                        • Vendange Chardonnay 2006
                          Chardonnay from California
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