Different types of grapes

You might think you know grapes, but given the sheer volume of variety in these juicy orbs that are eaten and pressed into beverages, there is a lot more to this fruit than what you see in the produce section and wine shop.

Grapes have been cultivated domestically for thousands of years, a trade that started in the Middle East in areas including Israel, Cyprus, Egypt, Iran and Turkey, to name a few. Another fun fact: According to the Food and Agriculture Organization, the world uses 70 percent of the grapes grown to make wine. And while an estimated 10,000 types of grapes exist in the Vitaceae family, only around 1,300 of these are used in winemaking. But even if you make vino out of the fruit, that doesn’t discount them from being a tasty, healthy snack option with limitless potential.

“Wine grapes are smaller than table grapes and have many seeds in them,” says Peter Becraft, winemaker at Anthony Road in the Finger Lakes region of New York. “That doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy them on their own or use them in making jam.”

In the United States, these berries (yup, they’re berries) are the sixth-largest crop. All 50 states produce the fruit, with California, Washington and New York taking the lead. According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, the U.S. had approximately 1,049,600 acres of grape-growing land in 2014, and harvested more than 7 million tons of the fruit.

Frankly, it’s overwhelming when you start to think about all the grapes out there. To get you started on your next grape adventure, check out the profiles of these 15 popular varietals. To keep it simple, we separated them by red and white. You may already be familiar with some, while others sound like they were concocted in a fantasy novel, but all are edible and delicious.

Red Grapes

1. Moon Drops

Moon Drop grapes on the vine. You may have also seen a related varietal called Witch Fingers.

Just this year this elongated purple-skinned grape made its way to markets, and boy are we happy it did. The person to thank for this variety is Dr. David Cain, a plant breeder and scientist who works for the grape-growing company Grapery, developing new types. He has been working on the Moon Drop for about 15 years, cultivating the plant from a Middle Eastern sample. No, it’s not a GMO fruit; Cain practices old-school plant breeding, which is why it took so long to develop this novelty.

Characteristics: Finger-like shape with dark purple, almost black skin. The flesh is firm and crunchy, giving this variety a nice snap that also helps it maintain in the refrigerator for days. It’s sweet, but not too sugary, and tastes a little like grape jelly.

Where they grow: Central California

Season: Late July to late September

2. Concord

This cultivar was developed by Boston native Ephraim Wales Bull in 1849 in a small farmstead outside of Concord, Massachusetts. Bull started selling the grapes in 1854, and since then they have remained one of the most widely used fruits in the country. The famous juice we know so well appeared shortly after in 1989 thanks to New Jersey dentist Thomas Welch. This beverage remains 100 percent pure grape juice — that jammy sweetness comes solely from the fruit.

Characteristics: If you have ever had Welch’s classic grape juice, then you know exactly what the Concord tastes like. Bright, sweet and full of that signature dark grape flavor. In the early fall, you might see these perfect blue-purple orbs popping up in the farmers’ market. They have easy-to-peel skins and large seeds. As an added bonus, they smell fantastic!

Where they grow: The Finger Lakes region in New York, Yakima Valley in Washington, Michigan and Lake Ontario

Season: August to September

3. Pinot Noir

Believe it or not, your favorite bottle of bubbly may come from one of these purple bunches.

Classically this grape is used to make wine, and though the Burgundy region in France popularized it, growers all over the world now cultivate this vine. Lately, good samples are coming out of the Willamette Valley in Oregon and the Russian River Valley in Sonoma County, California. You also find this grape in sparkling wines, namely champagne (more on champagne grapes later).

Characteristics: You find this thin-skinned vitis vinifera in tight clumps of deep purple fruits. “Pinot noir has flavors and aromas of ripe cherry, wild strawberry, earthiness and caramel,” says Dreaming Tree winemaker Sean McKenzie. This is the profile you find in both the raw fruit and wine, which is why these grapes have such a following. You may also detect rose, black cherry and currents.

Where they grow: All over the world but mainly in France, Oregon, New Zealand and California

Season: August to September

4. Lemberger

Also known by the equally awesome name blaufränkisch, this grape is used for making dark, tannic wines with subtle spice notes. Originally this early-budding varietal grew in the Württemberg wine region of Germany, but in the last few decades the Finger Lakes of New York and the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia have been having a lot of luck with the vines.

Characteristics: The plump grapes have a dusty blue color with a tannic berry essence. If you peel the skin back, you get more sweet, dark fruit flavors. Notes of pepper tend to come out in the grape, especially when made into wine.

Where they grow: Germany, Austria, Canada and New York

Season: August to September

5. Sweet Jubilee

Looking for an extra-large, extra-grapey grape? Look no further than tight clusters of Sweet Jubilees.

This grape hails from the Grapery’s Flavor Promise series, and made the scene in 2012. It’s one of the seeded varietals they grow, but proves so big you can cut it like an apple and just pop those suckers out. Eat them raw, sliced on a peanut butter sandwich or lightly grilled to give your salad a fruity, smoky kick.

Characteristics: You will know these grapes by the large black ovals that make up a bunch. They are sweet and firm with a clean grape flavor.

Where they grow: Central California

Season: Mid-August to early September

6. Valiant

It can’t be easy to cultivate grapes in Alaska, but thanks to its durability in freezing temperatures and harsher soil conditions, the fast-growing valiant does quite well there. These large blue grapes are used for juicing, jams and as a table grape, though they can be on the sweeter (almost sugary) side.

Characteristics: These cold-weather beauties taste a lot like Concords, and have an easy-to-remove skin and high-sugar flesh. They’re larger than the average table grape and aren’t as astringent.

Where they grow: Alaska, Canada

Season: Late August to September

7. Champagne

No, this isn’t the grape that the French make sparkling wine out of, though we understand how that might be confusing. Actually, this teeny-tiny grape’s official name is the Zante currant (though it’s not technically a currant) and is sometimes also called the black corinth. They are thought to have originated in Asia and/or Greece, but now are mainly grown in Europe and the United States. They are popular with chefs too, and at Rebelle in New York City chef Jessica Yang uses them alongside more standard grapes in her grape clafoutis. “Champagne grapes provide sweetness while the combination of table grapes add an element of tartness,” she says.

Characteristics: These are some of the smallest berries you can find, roughly the size of a pea, which makes them perfect for decorating a plate, popping in you mouth as a snack or giving to kids. They are tender and sweet, with a pleasing crunch.

Where they grow: California, Europe, Mediterranean

Season: June to September

8. Crimson Seedless

You now know the name for the red seedless grapes you’ve been serving with cheese plates for years. Say it loud and proud: Crimson Seedless!

Most of the red table grapes you see in the store are Crimson Seedless, thanks to David Ramming and Ron Tarailo of the USDA Fruit Genetics and Breeding Research Unit in Fresno, California. They bred these popular berries and released them to the public in 1989. Essentially, this is the classic grape many of us are used to, and since they have a later growing season you especially see them in the winter. Chef Yang also works with these grapes: “They add an element of tartness and have a thick skin, which keeps the juiciness and gives them a nice pop when you bite in,” she says.

Characteristics: They are firm and sweet with a pleasing tartness and have a long shelf life. The color is usually a pale brick red, sometimes with greenish streaks.

Where they grow: California

Season: August to November

9. Kyoho

Extra-large Kyoho grapes are prized in Japan for their size, uniform roundness and unparalleled flavor.

With fruits that get as big as a plum, these are the largest grapes you can find. In fact, the name “Kyoho” translates from Japanese to “giant-mountain grape,” a moniker that stemmed from Mount Fuji. These black beauties were specially bred in the 1930s and are a cross between the Ishiharawase and Centennial grape varieties. In Japan, this grape is served for dessert or juiced and mixed into traditional chuhai cocktails.

Characteristics: Large, dark black-purple berries with a big inedible seed and thick, bitter skin. You will want to peel off the outside to enjoy the sweet fruit underneath, which has a similar taste to the Concord grape.

Where they grow: Japan

Season: July to August

White Grapes

10. Cotton Candy

Sure doesn’t look like cotton candy, but one taste of these inimitably sweet green grapes and you’ll be like a kid at the fair again.

One bite of this juicy green grape and you will understand why they are so popular. Yes, they taste just like cotton candy, but in a healthy, natural form. “We weren’t breeding for a specific flavor, just grapes with a great flavor,” says Jim Beagle, CEO and co-owner of Grapery, which grows these sweethearts. “It’s amazing how much they taste like cotton candy.” You can find this varietal trademarked under the Grapery’s banner, and thus far it is only grown in California.

Characteristics: Cotton candy in grape form, hands down

Where they grow: Central California

Season: Mid-August to late September

11. Riesling

Riesling grapes are good for so much more than German and Austrian wine. That said, they make really great German and Austrian wine.

Riesling grows best in areas with cooler climates, like Austria, Germany and the Finger Lakes in New York. “Riesling is the most versatile grape grown, giving one the potential to make wines from bone-dry to dessert wine–sweet,” says Anthony Roads winemaker Peter Becraft. “The natural acidity of the grape provides structure, freshness and balance for the grape’s sugars. Riesling is wonderfully expressive of its site and the vintage it was grown in.” They taste great pressed into non-alcoholic juice, too.

Characteristics: As a grape, this specimen runs on the sweet side, with floral undertones and high acidity. This fruit also picks up the terroir of the land, meaning if the soil has more minerals in it, the grapes reflect that. All of these traits make it a great grape for winemaking. Becraft, for one, calls Riesling “the best food wine ever invented.”

Where they grow: Austria, New York, Germany, Canada and Alsace

Season: August to September, though Riesling grapes for ice wine are picked at the first frost, usually October.

12. Gewürztraminer

From pink grapes come white wine! Stranger things in winemaking have occurred.

You don’t have to have wine to understand what a bottle of gewürztraminer tastes like — just pop a fresh grape in your mouth. “For me the tastiest grapes in the vineyard to munch on are the gewürztraminer grapes,” says Becraft. “They really taste of the wine they turn into — so good.”

Characteristics: It may surprise you find out these white grapes have a pink-red skin, nothing like the almost clear wine you tend to see in the glass. While the size proves standard for the fruit, the flavor remains less grapey, and instead comes across as soft and clean with a hint of stone fruit.

Where they grow: All over the world

Season: July to September

13. Moon Balls

Created by Dole, you won’t often find these white-seeded grapes since they are only grown in South Africa and thus far production is limited. The company hopes to cultivate more in other parts of the world, so next year there might be a plethora of Moon Balls just waiting to orbit your kitchen.

Characteristics: These round hybrid grapes come out large and green, almost like an edible bouncy ball. They posses a thick skin and supple, sweet flesh that proves a bit more sugary than most table grapes.

Where they grow: South Africa

Season: February to March

14. Sultana

Also known as Thompson Seedless, these small white grapes originally hailed from the Ottoman Empire. Today, they are a favorite with chefs and are the chief fruit used to make commercial raisins. In the kitchen, prolific chef Chris Cosentino takes the little berries and gives them a blast of heat. “They are great blistered, which brings out most of their sweetness,” he says. “We’re using them in a great dish with squid, watermelon radish, serrano, mint, basil and cilantro.”

Characteristics: Sultanas are small, light green oval-shaped grapes that pack a wallop of sugar. Once dried, the sugar concentrates and produces that earthy-sweet raisin flavor everyone knows. Even when you see a darker raisin, that’s still a sultana.

Where they grow: Turkey, California and Australia

Season: July to September

15. Fry Muscadine

You might not realize that this large, brown-gold orb is actually a grape, but we assure you it is. Turns out the fry muscadine has a lot in common with beach bunnies: They bronze in the sun and get a taut, crispy outside. These heat-resistant cultivars were introduced to the market in 1970 by R. Lane of the University of Georgia.

Characteristics: Coming out about the size of a cherry tomato, these fruits turn a nice gold color when ripe that just adds to their sunny sweetness.

Where they grow: Georgia

Season: September

This post was updated from its original publishing date in 2015.

Through years, wines became more and more popular all around the world. Production of grapes for must and wine has followed that trend. Interestingly, in the last 20 years, non-traditional grape and wine production countries, such as China and New Zealand have significantly increased their wine production due to an increase in their vineyard areas, and natural resources. On the other hand, traditional wine production countries (France, Spain and Italy) decreased their area of harvested vineyards; however they remain the world’s largest producers of wine.

Popularity of wine, new area harvested (connected with different climate conditions) and new technology have increased the number of grape varieties. Grape and Wine Research and Development Corporation database record 1,271 different grape varieties. Traditionally, there were more white wine varieties grown in the world, but in last year’s, red wines dominate due to changes in wine consumption, especially in non-traditional wine countries such as China, where they prefer red wines. Top 10 most common grape varieties produced in the world are presented below; some of them more widely recognized than others.

Photo (by WallpapersWide): Red wine

No. 1 Cabernet Sauvignon

A red grape variety that grows well in almost all climates except from northern regions. It has a full-bodied but firm taste, due to the high tannin content winemakers are often blend it with other varieties such as Merlot and also Syrah.

No. 2 Merlot

Red grape variety that is most-planted grape variety in Bordeaux, France. It’s widely recognized also in Italy, Romania, California, USA and Chile. It has deep color, full body and contains less tannin then Cabernet Sauvignon that’s why, is often blend it with Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, or both.

No. 3 Airen

A white grape variety mostly recognized in Spain. It tolerates hot and dry conditions and poor soil. Wine is often acidic and characterless, that’s why it’s mainly used in brandy industry, production of high-alcohol local wines and lighter-bodied red wines, when blended with Cencibel.

No. 4 Tempranillo

A red grape variety of Spain. Since it prefers warmer climates, it is widely recognized also in California, Australia, South America, Turkey and New Zealand. It has a full-bodied taste and high acidity level.

No. 5 Chardonnay

A white grape variety that grows in almost every wine-production country in the world, because of its adaptability to a wide range of climates. It has a full-bodied taste and medium to high acidity. Normally chardonnays are dry or half dry wines.

Photo (by Rude Wines blog): White wine

No. 6 Syrah

A red grape variety mostly grown in California, Australia and France. It has a full-body taste and firm tannin; the grapes contain the most antioxidants among all popular wine grape varieties.

No. 7 Garnacha Tinta

A red wine variety that needs hot and dry conditions, and ripens late. It has a low acidity and tannin, and is usually used for blending with other red varieties.

No. 8 Sauvignon Blanc

A white wine variety that grows in France (Bordeaux and Loire Valley), Italy, South Africa and California. It is high in acidity with pronounced aromas and flavors.

No. 9 Trebbiano Toscano

A white wine variety origin form Italy, it’s also grown in France, Portugal, Spain, South America and Australia. Wine is fresh and fruity with high acidity, usually is used for blending with other wines and for brandy production.

No. 10 Pinot Noir

A red wine variety, grown in France, California, New Zealand, Australia and Chile. It has medium to high acidity, medium to low tannin, and fruity or earthy flavors. It’s not common to blend it with any other grapes.

Are you familiar with all of the world’s top 10 most common grape varieties?

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Featured image: Food Friend and Fun

The Different Types of Grapes for Eating & Making Wine

Switzerland’s Heidiland region was the setting for arguably the country’s best known work of fiction – Heidi. It’s here that I also stumbled upon Schloss Salenegg. The French might not approve, but the Swiss confirm that it sis one of Europe’s oldest modern wineries. Set up in 950 AD by the Abbots of Pfäfers monastery. It’s easily one of the world’s most prettiest vineyards – flanked by the Swiss Alps and a Baroque Castle. It’s the Romans who were responsible for Europe’s viticulture with traditions that date back two millennia.
According to the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization) 71% of the world grape production is used for wine, 27% is consumed as fresh fruit while 2% is used as dried fruit. It’s a complete contrast from India where close to 90% of the grapes produced are consumed fresh. India’s viticulture traditions date back to the 4th Century BC; Persian traders are believed to have introduced wine to the sub-continent. However, our modern wine making traditions date back only as far as the 1980s. India is largely a table grape production hub. The country’s grape production centers like Maharashtra (over 80% of India’s grape production) and Karnataka are largely focused on table grapes.
(9 Amazing Black Grapes Benefits: From Heart Health to Gorgeous Skin)It’s become quite common to see many lifestyle articles extol the health benefits of red wine. Grapes are rich in resveratrol, one of the world’s best known anti-oxidants that can combat cancers of colon and prostrate, Alzheimer’s and various viral and fungal infections. Grapes are also a rich source of micro-nutrient minerals (like manganese and iron) and vitamins (Vitamin K & C). Fresh grapes offer even more health benefits than a glass of wine or grape juice.
The three broad categories:
• Table grapes:These are grown for domestic consumption. The skin is usually thin and quite a few of these varieties are seedless.

•Wine grapes:They belong to the same species – Vitis Vinifera, but are grown primarily for wine production. Wine grapes in most parts of the world tend to be smaller, seeded and have thicker skins. These grapes are also harvested at a time when their juice is roughly 24% sugar by weight.

• Raisins and currants:They are classified as dried-fruits, these dried grape varieties are also referred to as sultanas. The sultana was among the first known raisins and originally made from Turkish Sultana grapes.

Popular grapes you can buy at supermarkets and fruit vendors in India
•Thompson seedless:They constitute more than 50% of India’s grape production (It is also exported). This seedless variety is characterized by its slightly elongated shape and medium-thin skin. It is also used in the production of raisins (Thompson Seedless is the American name for Sultana grapes).
• Sonaka seedless:It is a green variety similar to the Thompson seedless.
• Bangalore blue grapes:They received a Geographical Indication (GI) in 2013 and has been grown in the Bengaluru-Chikkaballapur region for over 150 years. Known for its sharp foxy flavour, these small blue grapes are used both for table consumption and for jams, preserves and juices.

•Seedless blue grape varieties: Sharad and Jumbo grapes are the popular seedless varieties grown in India. The Sharad varietal is crisp and comes in shades of black to purple and are usually oval-shaped. The Jumbo grapes are similar but come in larger clusters.
• Red globes grapes:They are among the largest round berries of all red grapes. Most of these grapes sold in India are imported from California and get their pale red colour from their anti-oxidant properties.
5 wine grapes you ought to know
•Cabernet Sauvignon: Made popular by the red wines from France’s Bordeaux region, this grape is now grown in most of the world’s popular wine regions. The wines from this grape are usually medium to full bodied with an aroma that is reminiscent to blackcurrants or cassis.
• Pinot Noir:It is rarely blended with other grapes and best known for wines that are fruity and earthy. The colour of Pinot Noir wines tend to be lighter.
(12 Surprising Red Wine Benefits: Will a Glass of Vino a Day, Actually Keep The Doctor Away?)
• Chardonnay: This green-skinned grape originated in the Burgundy region. This medium to light body wine can be acidic and features flavours and aromas that range from apple to pear to green plum.
•Merlot: The most planted grape varietal in Bordeaux and equally popular in Chile and Italy, this grape results in full bodied wines with a deep colour. One reason why many wine makers blend this with a Cabernet Sauvignon.
About the Author:
Ashwin Rajagopalan is a Chennai-based writer who writes on topics related to food, gadgets, trends and travel experiences. He enjoys communicating across cultures and borders in his weekday work avatar as a content and editorial consultant for a global major and one of India’s only cross cultural trainers.
CommentsThe opinions expressed within this article are the personal opinions of the author. NDTV is not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, suitability, or validity of any information on this article. All information is provided on an as-is basis. The information, facts or opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of NDTV and NDTV does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.

Grapevine Varieties: Different Types Of Grapes

Want to can your own grape jelly or make your own wine? There’s a grape out there for you. There are literally thousands of grape varieties available, but only a few dozen are grown to any extent with less than 20 making up the entire world’s production. What are some of the more common grape varieties and some characteristics of the different types of grapes?

Grapevine Types

Grapevine varieties are divided into table grapes and wine grapes. This means that table grapes are primarily used for eating and preserving while wine grapes are for, you guessed it, wine. Some varieties of grapes can be used for both.

American grapevine varieties and hybrids are generally grown as table grapes and for juicing and canning. They are also the most common varieties of grapes for the home gardener.

Oh, there is a third type of grape, but it is not commonly cultivated. There are over 20 species of wild grape throughout Canada and the United States. The four most common wild grape varieties are:

  • Riverbank grape (V. riparia)
  • Frost grape (V. vulpine)
  • Summer grape (V. aestivalis)
  • Catbird grape (V. palmate)

These wild grapes are important food sources for wildlife and are often found in moist, fertile forest soil near streams, ponds and roadsides. Most of the modern varieties of table and wine grapes are derived from one or more species of wild grape.

There may be several different types of grapes suited to grow in your garden, depending upon your climatic region. Warm regions with hot, dry days and cool, humid nights are ideal for growing wine grapes, Vitis vinifera. Those folks in cooler regions can plant a variety of table grape or wild grape.

Common Grape Varieties

Most of the wine grapes grown in the United States are grafted European grapes. This is because there is a bacterium in American soils that is lethal to non-native grapes. Grafting onto the rootstock of native grapes gives the European stock a natural resistance. Some of these French-American varieties include:

  • Vidal Blanc
  • Seyval Blanc
  • DeChaunac
  • Chambourcin

Varieties that are not of European origin include:

  • Chardonnay
  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Pinot

American wine grapes (which are more cold hardy than the hybrid or foreign grapes) include:

  • Concord
  • Niagra
  • Delaware
  • Reliance
  • Canadice

Concord probably rings a bell, as it is a common table grape often made into jelly. Niagra is a white grape that is also delicious eaten off the vine. Canadice, Catawba, Muscadine, Steuben, Bluebell, Himrod and Vanessa are also popular table grapes.

There are many other varietals of both table and wine grapes, each with a unique characteristic. A good nursery will be able to direct you as to which varietals are suitable for your region.

Learn about the most popular grapes and wine blends in the world. From Merlot to Malbec, and everything (and everywhere!) in between, our short guides break down everything you need to know about whatever wine you’re interested in.

  • Barbera – An everyday wine made from grapes of the same name in Italy’s Piedmont region. Offers juicy fruit notes with low tannins and high acidity.
  • Burgundy – A wine region in eastern France that serves some of the most sought after and expensive bottles in the world. Its reds are mostly made from Pinot Noir and its whites are made from Chardonnay.
  • Carménère – Once mistaken for Merlot, today the Carménère grape is most commonly grown in Chile. It produces fruit wines with a distinct green bell pepper note
  • Chianti – A world famous Italian wine region located between the Tuscan provinces of Siena and Florence. Specializes in red wines made from the Sangiovese grape.
  • Grenache – Grenache shines in France’s Rhone Valley, where it’s mainly blended with Syrah and Mourvedre, and is the star in wines from the historic appellation Châteauneuf-du-Pape. The grape is also grown in Spain, where it’s known as “Garnacha.”
  • Moscato – A sweet wine made using the Muscat grape. Most commonly associated with Moscato d’Asti, a slightly sparkling wine made in Italy’s Piedmont region.
  • Petite Sirah – Not to be confused with Syrah/Shiraz, Petite Sirah has found its home in California, where its produces full-bodied wines with high alcohol content and tannins.
  • Riesling – An aromatic German grape, vinified in a range of styles, from dry to sweet. Capable of aging for decades, Riesling is also commonly grown in the Finger Lakes region of New York and in Alsace, France.
  • Sauvignon Blanc – A refreshing, high acid white grape that’s grown throughout the world. The most famous expressions come from France’s Loire Valley and New Zealand’s Marlborough wine region.
  • Blaufränkisch – One of Austria’s leading varieties, Blaufränkisch is a good substitute if you’re a fan of Pinot Noir, presenting a medium bodied wine with red berry flavors and a touch of spice.
  • Cabernet Franc – A red grape commonly grown in Loire Valley and in Bordeaux, where it’s blended with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The grape is often recognized by distinctive bell pepper notes.
  • Chardonnay – Chardonnay is responsible for some of the world’s most complex white wines, most notably in Burgundy where it is known as white Burgundy. Along with Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, it’s also one of the three main grape varieties used in Champagne production.
  • Gamay – Gamay is the star variety in France’s Beaujolais region where it produces light-bodied, fruity wines with low tannins. The best versions of the grape are grown in the region’s 10 crus.
  • Grüner Veltliner – Austria’s signature white grape. Noted for its distinct herbal notes, Grüner Veltliner is an excellent accompaniment with hard-to-pair ingredients like white asparagus.
  • Malbec – Originally used in Bordeaux as a blending grape, Malbec is now closer associated with Mendoza, Argentina. Produces approachable wines with juicy dark fruit, vanilla, and cocoa notes.
  • Pinot Grigio / Gris – Known as Pinot Grigio in Italy and Pinot Gris in France, this white grape serves refreshing, fruit-driven wines, with high acidity.
  • Rosé Wine – Produced by soaking red grapes on their skins for shorter durations than red wines (no longer than two or three days), rosé wines range in color from pale salmon to deep pink. A summer staple and excellent food wine.
  • Syrah & Shiraz – This spicy red grape is known as Syrah in France, where it shines in the Rhone Valley. In Australia, the grape is called Shiraz and is widely grown in the southern winemaking regions of the country.
  • Zinfandel, Both Red & White – Originally from Croatia, Zinfandel is now most-commonly grown in California, where it offers jammy, bold flavors and high alcohol. Also vinified to a sweet rosé wine known as White Zinfandel, a category which experienced a cult following in the 1970’s and 1980’s.
  • Bordeaux – One of the most prestigious wine regions in the world, Bordeaux serves Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot driven blends as well as sweet wines made from Sémillon, Sauvignon blanc, and Muscadelle. The area is divided into three distinct regions: the Left Bank, Right Bank, and Entre-Deux-Mers.
  • Barolo – Produced using the Nebbiolo grape in northern Italy’s Piedmont region, Barolo is often referred to as the King of Wine. Full-bodied, complex, and featuring both high acidity and tannins, Barolo wines are perfect for pairing with food, including meat and pasta dishes.
  • Cabernet Sauvignon – Grown throughout the world, Cabernet Sauvignon produces grippy, tannic red wines that offer excellent aging potential. The best examples of the grape appear in Bordeaux’s Left Bank and California’s Napa Valley region.
  • Chenin Blanc – Chenin Blanc is South Africa’s leading white variety, where it’s also known as Steen. The grape is also famously grown in France’s Loire Valley. Because of Chenin Blanc’s high acidity, it can be made into a wide range of wines from dry, semi-sweet, sweet, and sparkling.
  • Gewürztraminer – One of the four “noble” grapes of France’s Alsace region, Gewürztraminer is a highly aromatic wine with notes of rose and lychee. It’s often made in an off-dry style, making it an excellent pairing with spicy foods.
  • Merlot – One of the main grapes in Bordeaux reds, Merlot is often blended with Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet France. As a varietal wine, Merlot produces approachable, fruity reds.
  • Nebbiolo – The star grape in Italy’s Piedmont region, Nebbiolo is used in Barolo and Barbaresco. Both are powerful red wines, capable of decades of aging.
  • Pinot Noir – A thin-skinned, fickle grape best-known for its use in red Burgundy wines. Revered by wine lovers for the complex, delicate, nuanced wines it offers.
  • Rioja – An iconic Spainish wine region, Rioja is known for producing age-worthy Tempranillo-driven red wines. White Rioja wines blend Malvasia and Viura with a handful of other white varieties.
  • Sparkling Wines – Made by fermenting a still wine for a second time, sparkling wines are made in a range of sweetnesses, from extra-brut to demi-sec.
  • Sauternes – Produced in the Graves region of Bordeaux, Sauternes is a lush dessert wine made with Sémillon, Sauvignon Blanc, and Muscadelle grapes. The presence of noble rot, a beneficial fungus, is crucial for the production of Sauternes wines.
  • Vino Nobile di Montepulciano – Named after the Tuscan town of Montepulciano, this red wine is predominantly made using Sangiovese grapes, which are known locally as Prugnolo. With gentle tannins and bright acidity, these wines pair wonderfully with a variety of foods.

Vitis vinifera

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Major host of:

Acanthacris ruficornis; Adoretus sinicus (Chinese rose beetle); Agrotis segetum (turnip moth); Amaranthus blitum (livid amaranth); Amaranthus graecizans (prostrate pigweed); Amaranthus retroflexus (redroot pigweed); Ampelophaga rubiginosa; Anacridium rubrispinum (red-spined tree locust); Antispila oinophylla; Aphis illinoisensis; Arabis mosaic virus (hop bare-bine); Arboridia adanae; Arboridia kakogowana; Armillaria mellea (armillaria root rot); Autographa gamma (silver-Y moth); Botryosphaeria stevensii (Botryosphaeria disease, grapevine); Botryotinia fuckeliana (grey mould-rot); Botryotinia pseudofuckeliana (grapevine grey mould); Botrytis pseudocinerea; Brevipalpus chilensis (Chilean false red mite); Brevipalpus lewisi (citrus flat mite); Broad bean wilt virus (lamium mild mosaic); Bromus tectorum (downy brome); Calepitrimerus vitis (grape leaf rust mite); Candidatus Phytoplasma australiense; Candidatus Phytoplasma solani (Stolbur phytoplasma); Ceresa alta (buffalo treehopper); Ceroplastes sinensis (Chinese wax scale); Chenopodium album (fat hen); Clematis vitalba (old man’s beard); Cnephasia longana (omnivorous leaf-tier); Colomerus vitis (grape erineum mite (USA)); Commelina benghalensis (wandering jew); Commelina diffusa (spreading dayflower); Coniella diplodiella (grapevine white rot); Coniella petrakii; Conyza bonariensis (hairy fleabane); Conyza canadensis (Canadian fleabane); Criconemella (ring nematode); Criconemella xenoplax (ring nematode); Cylindrocarpon olidum var. crassum; Cylindrocladiella parva; Cynodon dactylon (Bermuda grass); Dactylonectria pauciseptata; Datura stramonium (jimsonweed); Deilephila elpenor (large elephant hawkmoth); Diaporthe guangxiensis; Drepanothrips reuteri (grape, thrips); Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly, common); Drosophila suzukii (spotted wing drosophila); Eleusine indica (goose grass); Elsinoë ampelina (grape anthracnose); Emex australis (Doublegee); Empoasca vitis (smaller green leafhopper); Epiphyas postvittana (light brown apple moth); Eragrostis cilianensis (stink grass); Erysiphe necator (grapevine powdery mildew); Euphorbia helioscopia (sun spurge); Euphorbia hirta (garden spurge); Eupoecilia ambiguella (grapevine moth); Euproctis chrysorrhoea (brown-tail moth); Eurhizococcus brasiliensis; Eutypa lata (Eutypa dieback); Ferrisia virgata (striped mealybug); Filago gallica (narrowleaf cottonrose); Fomitiporia mediterranea (esca disease); Forficula auricularia (European earwig); Frankliniella occidentalis (western flower thrips); Grapevine Bulgarian latent virus; Grapevine chrome mosaic virus (chrome mosaic of grapevine); Grapevine deformation virus; Grapevine fanleaf virus (grapevine court-noué virus); Grapevine flavescence doree phytoplasma (flavescence dorée of grapevine); Grapevine leafroll-associated viruses (leafroll disease); Grapevine Pinot gris virus; Grapevine red blotch-associated virus (Grapevine red blotch disease); Grapevine Roditis leaf discoloration-associated virus; Grapevine rupestris stem pitting-associated virus; Grapevine rupestris vein feathering virus; Grapevine Syrah virus-1; Grapevine vein necrosis virus (vein necrosis of grapevine); Grapevine virus A (grapevine closterovirus); Grapevine virus D; Grapevine yellow speckle viroid 1; Grapevine yellows phytoplasmas; Graphocephala atropunctata (blue-green sharpshooter); Guignardia bidwellii (black rot); Harmonia axyridis (harlequin ladybird); Harrisina metallica (western grapeleaf skeletonizer); Helicotylenchus dihystera (common spiral nematode); Heliotropium europaeum (common heliotrope); Hemiberlesia lataniae (latania scale); Heteronychus arator (African black beetle); Hippotion celerio (taro hawkmoth); Holocacista rivillei; Homalodisca vitripennis (glassy winged sharpshooter); Hoplolaimus seinhorsti (lance nematode); Lepidium draba (hoary cress); Lobesia botrana (European grapevine moth); Lolium rigidum (rigid ryegrass); Longidorus (longidorids); Lycorma delicatula (spotted laternfly); Maconellicoccus hirsutus (pink hibiscus mealybug); Melilotus indica (Indian sweetclover); Meloidogyne arenaria (peanut root-knot nematode); Melolontha melolontha (white grub cockchafer); Nattrassia mangiferae (branch wilt of apple); Naupactus xanthographus (South American fruit tree weevil); Neofusicoccum mediterraneam; Orgyia postica (cocoa tussock moth); Otiorhynchus sulcatus (vine weevil); Oxalis pes-caprae (Bermuda buttercup); Parasaissetia nigra (pomegranate scale); Paratrichodorus porosus; Parthenolecanium corni (European fruit lecanium); Parthenolecanium persicae (peach scale); Paspalum distichum (knotgrass); Peach rosette mosaic virus (rosette mosaic of peach); Phaeoacremonium aleophilum (Petri disease); Phaeoacremonium hispanicum; Phaeoacremonium italicum; Phaeoacremonium tuscanicum; Phaeoacremonium viticola; Phaeomoniella chlamydospora (Petri disease); Phakopsora euvitis (grape rust fungus); Phalaenoides glycinae (vine moth); Philaenus spumarius (meadow froghopper); Phlyctinus callosus (vine calandra); Phomopsis viticola (Phomopsis cane and leaf spot); Phyllocnistis vitegenella; Phymatotrichopsis omnivora (cotton root rot); Phytophthora cryptogea (tomato foot rot); Planococcus ficus (grape mealybug); Plasmopara viticola (grapevine downy mildew); Platynota stultana (omnivorous leaf roller); Polygonum aviculare (prostrate knotweed); Polygonum lapathifolium (pale persicaria); Polyphagotarsonemus latus (broad mite); Pratylenchus pratensis; Pratylenchus vulnus (walnut root lesion nematode); Proeulia auraria (Chilean fruit tree leaf folder); Proeulia chrysopteris; Pseudococcus calceolariae (scarlet mealybug); Pseudococcus longispinus (long-tailed mealybug); Pseudococcus viburni (obscure mealybug); Pseudomonas syringae pv. syringae (bacterial canker or blast (stone and pome fruits)); Pseudopezicula tracheiphila (red fire disease of grapevine); Raphanus raphanistrum (wild radish); Raspberry ringspot virus (ringspot of raspberry); Rhipiphorothrips cruentatus (grapevine thrips); Rhizobium radiobacter (crown gall); Rhizobium rhizogenes (gall); Rhizobium vitis (crown gall of grapevine); Rosellinia necatrix (dematophora root rot); Rotylenchus vitis; Rumex (Dock); Saissetia coffeae (hemispherical scale); Scaphoideus titanus; Scirtothrips dorsalis (chilli thrips); Senecio inaequidens (South African ragwort); Senecio vulgaris; Setaria verticillata (bristly foxtail); Setaria viridis (green foxtail); Sinapis arvensis (wild mustard); Solanum nigrum (black nightshade); Sorghum halepense (Johnson grass); Sparganothis pilleriana; Spodoptera littoralis (cotton leafworm); Spodoptera litura (taro caterpillar); Strawberry latent ringspot virus (latent ring spot of strawberry); Tagetes minuta (stinking Roger); Tetranychus kanzawai (kanzawa spider mite); Tetranychus pacificus (Pacific spider mite); Tetranychus urticae (two-spotted spider mite); Theba pisana (white garden snail); Theresimima ampellophaga (European grapeleaf skeletonizer); Theresimima ampelophaga (grapevine smoky, moth (Israel)); Theretra clotho; Theretra oldenlandiae (impatiens hawkmoth); Thrips hawaiiensis (Hawaiian flower thrips); Tomato black ring virus (ring spot of beet); Tomato ringspot virus (ringspot of tomato); Tomato spotted wilt virus (tomato spotted wilt); Tribulus terrestris (puncture vine); Trichodorus (stubby root nematodes); Tylenchulus semipenetrans (citrus root nematode); Urtica urens (annual nettle); Vicia villosa (hairy vetch); Viteus vitifoliae (grapevine phylloxera); Xanthomonas campestris pv. viticola (leafspot, canker); Xestia c-nigrum (spotted cutworm); Xiphinema (dagger nematode); Xiphinema americanum (dagger nematode); Xiphinema diversicaudatum (dagger nematode); Xiphinema index (fan-leaf virus nematode); Xiphinema rivesi (dagger nematode); Xyleborus dispar (pear blight beetle); Xylella fastidiosa (Pierce’s disease of grapevines); Xylophilus ampelinus (canker of grapevine); Xylosandrus germanus (black timber bark beetle); Zygotylenchus guevarai

Minor host of:

Achatina fulica (giant African land snail); Albonectria rigidiuscula (green point gall); Aleurocanthus spiniferus (orange spiny whitefly); Alfalfa mosaic virus (alfalfa yellow spot); Ameroseius pavidus; Ametastegia; Anagallis arvensis (scarlet pimpernel); Anastrepha fraterculus (South American fruit fly); Anystis baccarum (whirligig mite); Aonidiella aurantii (red scale); Aonidiella orientalis (oriental yellow scale); Apate monachus (black borer); Aphis fabae (black bean aphid); Aphis gossypii (cotton aphid); Aphis spiraecola (Spirea aphid); Armillaria luteobubalina (armillaria root rot); Artichoke Italian latent virus; Aspergillus niger (black mould of onion); Aspidiotus destructor (coconut scale); Aspidiotus nerii (Oleander scale); Bactrocera tryoni (Queensland fruit fly); Botryosphaeria dothidea (canker of almond); Botryosphaeria obtusa (black rot of apple); Botryosphaeria parva; Brevipalpus californicus (citrus flat mite); Campylocarpon fasciculare; Candidatus Phytoplasma asteris (yellow disease phytoplasmas); Carnation ringspot virus; Ceratitis capitata (Mediterranean fruit fly); Ceratitis rosa (Natal fruit fly); Ceroplastes rusci (fig wax scale); Chaetocnema confinis (flea beetle); Chenopodium polyspermum (Manyseeded goosefoot); Cherry leaf roll virus (walnut ringspot); Chinavia hilaris (green stink bug); Chrysomphalus dictyospermi (dictyospermum scale); Cirsium arvense (creeping thistle); Cirsium vulgare (spear thistle); Citrus exocortis viroid (citrus exocortis); clover phyllody phytoplasma (phyllody of clover); Colletotrichum acutatum (black spot of strawberry); Colletotrichum capsici (leaf spot of peppers); Colletotrichum nymphaeae; Conogethes punctiferalis (castor capsule borer); Conotrachelus nenuphar (plum curculio); Cornu aspersum (common garden snail); Costelytra zealandica (grass grub); Crocidosema plebejana (cotton tipworm); Cucumber mosaic virus (cucumber mosaic); Cuscuta japonica (Japanese dodder); Cylindrocladiella lageniformis; Cylindrocladium peruvianum; Diabrotica speciosa (cucurbit beetle); Diaporthe eres (apple leaf, branch and fruit fungus); Diaporthe gulyae; Diaporthe helianthi (stem canker of sunflower); Diplodia corticola; Dociostaurus maroccanus (Moroccan locust); Endoclita signifer; Epicoccum nigrum (red blotch of grains); Eudocima fullonia (fruit-piercing moth); Eulecanium tiliae (nut scale); Euseius scutalis; Fumaria officinalis (common fumitory); Galium aparine (cleavers); Gibberella zeae (headblight of maize); Globisporangium irregulare (dieback: carrot); Gonocephalum simplex (dusty brown beetle); Grapevine asteroid mosaic-associated virus; Gryllotalpa gryllotalpa (European mole cricket); Haematonectria haematococca (dry rot of potato); Halyomorpha halys (brown marmorated stink bug); Helianthus ciliaris (Texas blueweed); Helicotylenchus multicinctus (banana spiral nematode); Helicotylenchus pseudorobustus (spiral nematode); Heliothis virescens (tobacco budworm); Helopeltis antonii (tea bug); Hemicriconemoides mangiferae; Hemicycliophora arenaria (sheath nematode); Hibiscus trionum (Venice mallow); Holocacista capensis; Hop stunt viroid (hop stunt viroid); Hoplolaimus pararobustus (lance nematode); Hyphantria cunea (mulberry moth); Icerya seychellarum (Seychelles scale); Lasiodiplodia crassispora; Lasiodiplodia theobromae (diplodia pod rot of cocoa); Linaria vulgaris (common toadflax); Lolium multiflorum (Italian ryegrass); Longidorus elongatus (needle nematode); Mamestra brassicae (cabbage moth); Meloidogyne ethiopica (Root-knot nematode); Meloidogyne hapla (root knot nematode); Meloidogyne luci; Monilinia fructigena (brown rot); Murgantia histrionica (harlequin bug); Neofusicoccum australe; Neofusicoccum macroclavatum; Neofusicoccum vitifusiforme; Neonectria macrodidyma; Nicandra physalodes (apple of Peru); Noctua pronuba (common yellow underwing moth); Oligonychus coffeae (tea red spider mite); Oligonychus fileno; Otiorhynchus rugosostriatus (rough strawberry root weevil); Panonychus citri (citrus red mite); Panonychus ulmi (European red spider mite); Pantoea agglomerans (bacterial grapevine blight); Papaver rhoeas (common poppy); Passiflora foetida (red fruit passion flower); Pemphigus saliciradicis; Penicillium expansum (blue mould of stored apple); Penicillium viridicatum; Pennisetum clandestinum (Kikuyu grass); Peridroma saucia (pearly underwing moth); Phaeoacremonium fraxinopennsylvanicum; Phaeoacremonium scolyti; Phenacoccus solani; Phomopsis cotoneastri; Phyllophaga (white grubs); Phytoplasma mali (apple proliferation); Pinnaspis strachani (lesser snow scale); Plagionotus arcuatus; Planococcus citri (citrus mealybug); Potato virus X (potato interveinal mosaic); Pratylenchus penetrans (nematode, northern root lesion); Pratylenchus thornei; Pseudomonas viridiflava (bacterial leaf blight of tomato (USA)); Raspberry bushy dwarf virus (raspberry symptomless decline); Rastrococcus iceryoides (mango mealy bug); Richardia brasiliensis (white-eye (Australia)); Rotylenchulus reniformis (reniform nematode); Rumex crispus (curled dock); Scirtothrips aurantii (South African citrus thrips); Scutellonema brachyurus; Scutellonema clathricaudatum; Selenaspidus articulatus (West Indian red scale); Setaria faberi (giant foxtail); Solanum elaeagnifolium (silverleaf nightshade); Sonchus arvensis (perennial sowthistle); Sonchus oleraceus (common sowthistle); Sowbane mosaic virus; Spodoptera eridania (southern armyworm); Spodoptera frugiperda (fall armyworm); Stellaria media (common chickweed); Taraxacum officinale complex (dandelion); Tetranychus cinnabarinus (carmine spider mite); Thrips imaginis (plague thrips); Thrips tabaci (onion thrips); Tobacco necrosis virus (augusta disease of tulip); Tobacco ringspot virus; Trichodorus viruliferus (stubby root nematode); Truncatella angustata; Urophorus humeralis (pineapple sap beetle); Veronica persica (creeping speedwell); Verticillium dahliae (verticillium wilt); Xylotrechus chinensis (tiger longicorn beetle)

Associated with (not a host):

Aureobasidium pullulans (blue stain of wood); Bacillus subtilis; Colaspis caligula; Cylindrocarpon liriodendri; Diaporthe ambigua (canker: pear); Diplodia africana; Diplodia olivarum; Longidorus carniolensis; Meloidogyne javanica (sugarcane eelworm); Metaseiulus occidentalis (western predatory mite); Orthotydeus californicus; Orthotydeus kochi; Phaeoacremonium alvesii; Phaeoacremonium iranianum; Phaeoacremonium parasiticum; Phaeoacremonium sicilianum; Phomopsis theicola; Phytonemus pallidus (strawberry mite); Polistes dominula (European paper wasp); Pseudomonas fluorescens (pink eye: potato); Schizophyllum commune (wood rot); Scirtothrips citri (California citrus thrips); Trichoderma harzianum (hyperparasite of Rhizoctonia solani); Trichothecium roseum (fruit rot of tomato); Tylenchorhynchus mediterraneus; Zaprionus indianus

Host of (source – data mining):

Acoloithus falsarius; Agriotes lineatus (wireworm); Aleurodothrips fasciapennis; Alternaria alternata (alternaria leaf spot); Altica ampelophaga (leaf beetle, Mediterranien grape); Amphicerus bicaudatus (apple twig borer); Amphicerus bimaculatus; Amyelois transitella (navel orange worm); Anomala cuprea (oriental beetle); Anomala dubia; Argyrotaenia ljungiana; Asymmetrasca decedens; Cadra figulilella (raisin moth); Cerosterna scabrator; Coniocybe pallida; Cotinis nitida (june beetle, green); Ctenopseustis obliquana; Diaporthe medusaea; Dikrella cockerellii; Drosophila simulans; Edwardsiana rosae (rose leafhopper); Empoasca decipiens (leafhopper, cotton); Empoasca solani; Eotetranychus carpini (mite, yellow); Eotetranychus carpini vitis; Eotetranychus pruni; Eotetranychus willamettei (willamette mite); Erythroneura comes (grape leafhopper); Erythroneura elegantula (leafhopper, grape); Erythroneura variabilis (leafhopper, grape); Erythroneura ziczac (virginiacreeper leafhopper); Fidia viticida (grape rootworm); Frankliniella cestrum; Fusarium oxysporum (basal rot); Fusarium proliferatum; Gibberella intricans (damping-off of safflower); Gibberella sacchari (pineapple eye rot); Glyptoscelis squamulata (beetle, grape bud); Grapevine fleck virus (fleck of grapevine); Greeneria uvicola (bitter rot of grapevine); Grovesinia pyramidalis (zonate leaf spot of Indian jujube); Harrisina americana (grape leaf, skeletonizer); Hyalesthes obsoletus; Hyles livornica; Hypothenemus eruditus; Hypurus bertrandi (weevil, portulaca leafmining); Jacobiasca lybica (cotton jassid); Kalotermes flavicollis (termite, yellownecked dry-wood); Limothrips cerealium (corn, thrips); Lygus spinolae (plant bug, pale green); Macrosiphum euphorbiae (potato aphid); Margarodes prieskaensis (ground pearls); Margarodes vredendalensis (ground pearls); Melittia cucurbitae (squash vine borer); Meloidogyne incognita (root-knot nematode); Merophyas divulsana (lucerne leaf roller); Metcalfa pruinosa (frosted moth-bug); Mucor circinelloides (post-harvest rot); Neonectria radicicola (black root of strawberry); Nipaecoccus viridis (spherical mealybug); Noctua fimbriata; Nysius niger (false chinch bug); Oides scutellata; Orientus ishidae (mosaic leafhopper); Otiorhynchus ligustici (alfalfa snout beetle); Paranthrene asilipennis; Paranthrene regalis (grape clearwing, moth); Paranthrene simulans; Penicillium notatum (storage rot of cereals); Penicillium viticola; Peribatodes rhomboidaria (willow beauty); Perissopneumon ferox; Pestalotiopsis mangiferae (brown spot: mango); Phialophora parasitica (wilt: date palm); Phyllactinia guttata (powdery mildew of hardwood trees); Phyllocoptes vitis (acarinosis of vine); Planococcus minor (passionvine mealybug); Pleurotus ostreatus (oyster mushroom); Polychrosis viteana (grape berry, moth); Pseudococcus maritimus (grape mealybug); Pseudomonas syringae (bacterial blast); Pulvinaria vitis (cottony maple, scale); Pyrrhalta luteola (elm leaf beetle); Rattus rattus (black rat); Retithrips syriacus (black vine thrips); Rhizopus stolonifer (bulb rot); Schistocerca nitens (gray bird grasshopper); Scirtothrips mangiferae (mango thrips); Sinoxylon perforans; Sphaeraspis vitis (ground pearls); Stelidota geminata; Stereum hirsutum (wood decay); Targionia vitis; Tenuipalpus granati; Tetranychus mcdanieli (mcDaniel spider mite); Theretra japonica; Trametes versicolor (wood decay); Vitacea polistiformis (grape root, borer); Xiphinema italiae; Xylotrechus pyrrhoderus (grape borer); Zeuzera coffeae (coffee carpenter); Zygina nivea; Zygina rhamni

Grape vine


  • Vine cultivation and wine production kicked off in Armenia. It then spread to Eqypt and Phoenicia and around 4,000 years ago to Greece. The Greeks took the art of viticulture around the Mediterranean and the Romans spread the knowledge up the river valleys into France and Germany.

Where it grows

  • Wild grapes thrived in the warm, damp, wooded lowland valleys from Turkestan, deep in Asia, through Armenia into Thrace.
  • Water is a precious resource and vineyards use a lot of it, but experiments are being conducted in Australia where roots on one side of the vine are kept in dry soil while roots on the other side are irrigated. The process is then reversed. This results in less side shoots and more grapes, which requires less pruning and offers savings in money and water.

Common uses

Grapes are eaten fresh and dried. Sultanas are soft, juicy amber-coloured fruits with a sweet flavour produced from seedless white grapes, mainly Thompson Seedless. Raisins are dark brown and wrinkled with a sweet mellow flavour. Currants are dried, black seedless grapes from a variety called Corinth, grown in Greece for more than 2,000 years.

Grape juice is widely drunk and, of course, used to make wine. The strong glass bottles with corks developed in the 17th century were the key to the type of wines we produce today. Although grapes are mostly crushed mechanically these days, they are still crushed by foot in some areas. Years ago the sugars in the grape juice were turned to alcohol by the yeast on the skins; today things are carefully controlled. Wine is more often sterilised and the yeast added. Good wine vintages are stored for around three years in heavy wooden casks. The tannin from the oak casks helps to preserve the wine when it is bottled. One of the reasons that good wines cost so much is that these casks have to be renewed every five years.

Apart from using various grapes, different types of wine are made by adjustments in the fermentation process. Champagne is made by bottling before fermentation has finished allowing the process to finish in the bottle. Sweet wines have their fermentation brought to a premature halt by the addition of sulphur. Port is made by arresting fermentation by the addition of alcohol. Brandy, which contains the most alcohol, is made by distilling wine.

Useful links

  • Plants for a Future
  • Royal Horticultural Society
  • University of Maryland Medical Centre
  • American Cancer Society


  • Lobe: incomplete division in any plant organ (eg leaf).
  • Palmate: when all lobes originate from a central point.
  • Panicle: multi-branched collection of flowers (inflorescence).
  • Tendrils: slender coiling structure.

Table Grapes vs. Wine Grapes

Tips & Tricks October 10, 2012 – Updated on November 1st, 2017

One of these is more popular with non-drinkers.

Table Grapes vs Wine Grapes

Table Grapes Are Fat and Sassy Table grapes are grown in a way to make them more physically appealing. They are larger, seedless, with thicker pulp and thinner skins to give them that ideal ‘pop’ when you eat them. Table grapes have less acidity and also less sugar than a wine grape.

Wine Grapes Are Lean and Mean Wine grapes are grown to produce the sweetest and most potent grapes. They are smaller, riddled with seeds, have thicker skins and higher juice content (vs. pulp). Wine grapes are delicate and difficult to transport. When you eat a fresh wine grape they ooze apart leaving you with crunchy bitter seeds and chewy grape skin.

Seedless grapes are easier to eat but they are less flavorful than seeded table grape varieties.

Most commonly cultivated grapes are Vitis vinifera

About 90% of cultivated grapes in the world are Vitis vinifera. Vitis vinifera is commonly called The European grapevine which has ancestral roots in Iran. It includes wine grapes like Cabernet Sauvignon and table grapes like Red Globe grapes.

The Wine Grape Family Tree

Table grapes and wine grapes are related to one another through their genus Vitis. There are more than 70 different species that are within the Vitis genus including the most common, Vitis vinifera, to the more ornamental, Vitis californica. All wine grapes are Vitis vinifera. There is now documented proof of 40 species of grapes indigenous to China.
Vitis vinifera is the tip of the iceberg.

The Wine Glossary Poster

Inspired by the original Gutenberg prints, this poster features a compendium of wine terms.

Buy Poster

Identify Table Grapes vs Wine Grapes in The Vineyard

Next time you’re driving through vineyards you can identify the type of grapes (table grapes vs. wine grapes) by looking at the trellises.

Common wine grape trellis system in America is called ‘The guyot method’

Wine grape vineyards

Wine grape vineyards commonly use vertical trellises to manage the greenery (aka canopy) and grape exposure to sun. The goal with wine grapes is to concentrate the flavor of the grapes produced.

Managing vine vigor is important for wine grape growers. Vine vigor is how productive a vine is. An overly vigorous vine will produce a lot of average quality grapes, a lower vigor vine will produce fewer more concentrated grapes. More concentrated grapes = better wine.

a common site in table grape vineyards

Table grape vines

Table grapes are grown in a way to reduce clusters from rubbing other clusters, stems or leaves. A trellis system that lets the grapes hang independently is better for producing picture table grapes. Table grapes tend to be more vigorous than wine grapes and grow in areas with soils high in nutrients such as river valleys.

A single mature Cowart muscadine (Vitis rotundifolia) table grape vine can produce 15-30 lbs of grapes per vine. A mature Zinfandel (Vitis vinifera) wine grape vine produces about 8-12 lbs of grapes per vine.

Number of wine grape varieties in China Article (pdf)
Production of Muscadine Grapes per vine Edible Landscaping
Basic Vitis genus information on wikipedia
The incomplete list of grape varieties on the earth wikipedia

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