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BASIC DESCRIPTIONS OF WINE VARIETALS

Red grapes:

Cabernet Sauvignon - Rich, full-bodied grape, leathery on the nose, intense blackberry flavour.

Gamay - The Beaujolais grape produces light wines of strawberry and cherry character.

Grenache - Fruit forward, medium-bodied, violet on the nose. used in most Châteauneuf-du-Pape blends.

Merlot - Bright nose, soft style on the palate, hints of bing cherry. Blended in many Bordeaux wines.

Pinot Noir - Medium bodied, earthy quality. Some tobacco and must to the aroma. Good acidity, velvety fruit and hints of truffles on the palate. The predominant grape of the Burgundy region.

Sangiovese - This grape produces light, easy drinking wine, perfect for food. It is the predominant grape used in Italy’s Chianti region.

Syrah/Shiraz - A very versatile grape. Sandalwood and cloves on the nose, black pepper on the palate. Medium bodied with lots of raspberry and black cherry notes.

Tempranillo - A Spanish grape producing light to medium bodied wines. Often blended, it has a rich nose with brown sugar and rusty elements. Good acidity makes it a light food wine.
Zinfandel - California’s “National Grape”. A rich, full-bodied and complex wine. Aromas of coffee, black licorice, and leather. On the palate, ripe boysenberry, strawberry and raspberry tones.


White grapes:


Chardonnay - The most common white varietal. Creamy, buttery, fruit forward. Each country has their own style, some rich and toasty, some light with tropical fruit notes.

Chenin Blanc - Often used in blending. A nutty, honey aroma. Soft subtle fruit on the palate.

Gewürztraminer - Original German, this sweeter style grape offers a nose of pineapple and cloves. A powerful fruit forward taste with lots of spice and hints of toffee.

Muscat - This grape produces a sweet floral wine. Often made in dessert style form. Hints of rose petals and pear.

Riesling - Another grape of German origin, this sweet grape offers tastes of green apple and honeydew melon.

Sauvignon Blanc - A light grape done particularly well by the New Zealanders. Fresh herbaceous notes, with hints of fresh cut grass and asparagus. Distinctive gooseberries, elderflower on the palate.

Sémillon - A very light grape often used in blending. Citrus on the nose, peach and lychee on the palate.

Viognier - French in origin, this light and refreshing grape has been used in blending as well. On it’s own it offers soft apricot aromas. Subtle tropical fruit notes on the palate.

For Assistance Please Contact:
steve@britanniawinemerchants.ca

Britannia Wine Merchants
810 49th Ave SW. Calgary, Alberta, Canada. T2S1G9
Tel: 403 287-3833   Fax: 403 398-7712

Monday - Friday 10AM – 8PM, Saturday 10AM – 6PM, Sunday Noon – 5PM

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