Wine begins with a grape.
More than 1,300 varieties of grapes are used in commercial winemaking, but a select few Vitis vinifera varieties have earned “noble” status and are responsible for many of the world’s most revered wines.
These grapes are typically centuries old, are celebrated in their native lands and have traveled the globe, finding success in far-flung locales. Their multifaceted personalities shine in myriad soils and climates, delivering countless styles. Wine Spectator’s Know Your Grapes index offers an introduction to each of these important varieties, including origins, key regions, flavor profiles and more.