Major Red Wines Varieties

Red Wine Variety

With so many different red grape varieties, there is a wide range of red wines on the market. Different red grape varieties are used for production of different red wines with specific flavour characteristics. Often the climate and the soil of a particular region will determinate which grape varietal is ideal for planting and harvesting. The red wine varieties range from Merlot, Shyraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir, and you can find these grape varieties planted all around the world.

Merlot – As a popular red wine variety and a mixing grape, Merlot is known for its blue dark color that is generally associated with blueberry. Merlot red wine variety features full flavour and softer tannins, and is consider as one of the most drinkable red wines in the world. Due to its resilience and resistance to both hot and cold temperatures, Merlot red wine variety is grown successfully all around the world. This red wine variety can be mixed with other grapes, especially with Cabernet Sauvignon. On the palate, this wine can be characterized as intense, deep, fleshy and fruity. On the nose you will sense currant, berry, plum and sometimes vanilla notes. This red wine is a medium-bodied, softer and lighter than the Cabernet, yet still full flavoured.

Shiraz – Shiraz is a heavy, dark skin red wine variety that is generally grown in regions which feature hotter climate like Australia, California and France. It is usually mixed with Grenache. The style of this red wine variety varies from one region to another, and is called Shiraz in Australia only while elsewhere is known as Shirah. This red wine variety is loaded with antioxidants and features flavours of blackberry, vanilla, and pepper.

Cabernet Sauvignon – This is maybe the most popular red wine variety. It is often used as a blending component. Cabernet Sauvignon red wine variety has a deep red colour similar to raspberries. This red wine benefits greatly from the fermentation process as the fermenation alleviates the tannins and brings out the rich flavours and the complexity of the grape. Cabernet Sauvignon is a full bodied wine and can be matched with almost any kind of meal.

Pinot Noir – Pinot Noir is a red wine variety with thin skin, planted in regions with cooler climates. There are two major types of Pinot Noir red wine variety:

  • Burgundian style – the Pinot Noir planted in regions with cooler climates. This red wine variety features more earthiness on the palate and fruit notes in the back of the palate.
  • The second Pinot Noir grape type is planted in regions with warmer climates and extensive sunlight.