Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes

There are 1,368 varieties covered in Master of Wine Jancis Robinson's Wine Grapes. Bet you can't try them all.

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Verdelho: The Last Wine I Ever Loved

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 4 comments

Unlike any other wine in the world, Madeira will remain virtually unchanged from the time you open the bottle until the time days, weeks, months, years later when you decide to finish it. This is a long-term relationship. More

Dessert Wine Win: Vote for Pedro... Ximenez

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 1 comment

I'll be honest with you. I didn't know anyone who loved Pedro Ximenez. Poor Pedro Ximenez. It smells a bit like a sugary root beer. Lucky for our friend Pedro, however, once upon a time someone clever dreamed up a special sundae. More

You Shouldn't Drink Some Wines... Yet

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 4 comments

Stash a bottle under the bed, or hide it in the basement, or make a cool dark cave in the back of your coat closet where it can hibernate... come next season, it'll be an even better surprise than finding a $20 bill in your pocket. More

Viura: A Perfect White Party Wine from Rioja

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I pay careful attention to the wine that disappears first at a party. When you have a mess of bottles open and one of them is emptied well in advance of the others, you know people liked it. More

Juhfark: A Wild Hungarian Wine to Drink by Candlelight

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 1 comment

"I brought you a Juhfark," a friend announced when she arrived at a party. "Umm, what??" I asked, unsure if she'd just said something inappropriate. More

Northern Italy's Lagrein Grape: A Local Hero

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Lagrein has been planted in Alto Adige for over 500 years. Despite the long history and ample plantings in the region, up until the last couple of decades this dark and rustic red wasn't really ever taken seriously. More

Schiava: This Northern Italian Red Grape Works Magic

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 1 comment

I headed to Alto Adige, in part, to find inspiration again. I'd maneuvered a tough summer, and to be honest, I didn't care about wine much at the moment. "Try to relax and enjoy your trip," my friend told me before I took off. "Italy can do magical things," she promised. More

Auxerrois: A Lesson from Alsace on Wine's Acidity

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How do you know if you like high acidity? Answer these questions: Did you love Sour Patch Kids as a child? Do you prefer your lemonade more tart than sweet? If you answered "yes," you probably love acidity in your wine. (Welcome to my club. Perhaps we will make punk-rock-inspired T-shirts for ourselves.) More

Moschofilero: Light and Lovely White Wine for a Late-Summer Evening

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 1 comment

There's a reason this "aromatic, high-acid Greek variety" has, as Wine Grapes mentions, "seen a surge in popularity and plantings in the last twenty years": it's delicious. More

Teroldego: One Crushworthy Italian Grape's Revival

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 1 comment

Look for this bottle. When you find it, buy it. In fact, buy two. I promise it won't be long before you're crushing on Elisabetta Foradori and Teroldego, too. More

Silvaner: Where Will this White Wine Grape Pop Up Next?

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This acid-driven white wine grape has been at it for over 500 years, and has changed gears, reinvented itself and worn any number of hats. Its future looks bright—and long. More

Vidianó: Affordable White Wine from Crete

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I opened two bottles of Vidianó last night, because: what the hell. Because I had them, because I was in love with Oakland, because Vidianó seemed as appropriate as anything to celebrate with. More

Devín: Visiting Slovakia By Way of a Little Bottle of Wine

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 4 comments

In many people's minds, the wine world dead-ends right around the eastern borders of Germany and Austria. What lies beyond is just a hazy tangle of Eastern European countries and, somewhere beyond that, Russia, the Middle East and Asia. No wine there. More

Ribolla Gialla: The Rest of A Rare Grape's Story

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There's more to the story of Ribolla Gialla, particularly in the Napa Valley. More

Liatiko: Would You Buy a 'Weird' Greek Red for Under $15?

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 7 comments

I want to think that a beautifully packaged bottle from an interesting-sounding grape made in a picturesque Mediterranean region would sell like hotcakes. On the other hand, I have to wonder what Liatiko's fate would be on a wine list or store shelf if no one is there to point out what a great deal it is and how fantastic it will be with duck confit. More

Assyrtiko: Fierce and Delightful Wine for Summer

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 5 comments

Rent control, shment control, it seems. I have to find a new home. In less than 30 days. So I "celebrated" one of my last leisurely days (a.k.a. drowned my sorrows) in my near-and-dear Dolores Park with a bottle of Assyrtiko. More

The Perfect Wine for Pesto Pasta: What Grows Together Goes Together

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 1 comment

Finding a perfect wine to drink with with pesto is a real challenge. You need something punchy enough to stand confidently against sharp herbs and garlic, yet textured and salty to complement all that Parmesan and the creaminess of the pine nuts. More

Žlahtina: The Perfect Under-$20 Wine For Oysters

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 2 comments

I'd been hiding this quirky, slender, delicious looking bottle in the fridge for a special occasion. I don't mean a fancy dinner or holiday, or even an evening with important company. I mean a special occasion... Enter: the northern California coast, where there are fresher-than-fresh oysters available just footsteps away, doled out by the bag-full with little accompaniment besides sunshine and a shucking knife. More

Hondarribi Zuri: A Wine Grape for Celebration-Enhancing Purposes

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 1 comment

Basque locals traditionally drink the stuff out of a bulbous, pointy spouted, awesomely crowd-friendly pitcher called a porrón held high above one's head. More

Nerello Mascalese: Please Do Not Tell Anyone About This Wine

Adventures with Weird Wine Grapes Stevie Stacionis 8 comments

Frankly, I'd rather not tell you about this wine. I actually don't want you—or anyone—to know about it because I am fearful that then the prices will inevitably go up and the availability will go down, and I'll be left (poor) with wicked withdrawal symptoms and resentment. More

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