White Wines Made From Red Grapes

Red grapes like Cabernet Sauvignon are increasingly being used to produce white wines. The results? Bold, complex whites with red-fruit notes that are worth seeking out.
Photo by Sanjay O'Vacy

Complex, bold and richly textured, these white wines from red grapes challenge convention. Grapes are pressed gently to avoid skin contact for wines with red-fruit notes, minus the color and tannins.

Cabernet Sauvignon 

Rivero González Blanco (Parras Valley)

What It’s Like: Initial notes of peach skin, ripe pear and Golden Delicious apple tease your brain into thinking it’s a traditional white, but raspberry comes as a surprise. The texture evokes tannins, which provide an enjoyable mental puzzle as you sip this sumptuous, complex wine.

Did You Know? Mexico’s burgeoning wine scene is a playground of experiments that includes whites as well as unexpected red blends (Tempranillo and Nebbiolo, anyone?).

Sangiovese

Cantina LaSelva Sangiovese Bianco (Toscano)

What It’s Like: The crystalline color belies the spectrum of flavors that erupt on the palate. Lively and juicy, the bright cherry and red berries normally found in Sangiovese shine through, along with nectarine and floral notes.

Did You Know? Although Tuscany is best known for its reds, the first wine ever granted Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC) status in Italy was Vernaccia di San Gimignano, a Tuscan white wine.

The Curious Story of White Pinot Noir

Pinotage

Mellasat ∑ White Pinotage (Paarl)

What It’s Like: Texturally intriguing, the first sip is reminiscent of biting an apple. Tropical fruit, ripe banana and bitter almond flavors persist on the palate, while a slightly viscous and round mouthfeel are enlivened by bright acidity.

Did You Know? Considered the flagship wine of the estate, the 2017 vintage will mark the 10th anniversary of this rare cuvée.

Tempranillo

Pradorey El Cuentista (Castilla y León)

What It’s Like: The floral, apricot, citrus and raspberry aromas are delicate, but this wine’s got power. Robust, with good structure and length, you’ll ponder for hours if it’s better with fish or meat. (Hint: It goes well with both.)

Did You Know? Pradorey ages this wine on lees from Verdejo to give it the desired lushness.

Published on December 20, 2017
Topics: Wine Basics



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