Zibibbo (ZEE-BEE-boh)

The name, on the island of Sicily, for the ancient variety muscat of Alexandria and the source of several famous Sicilian dessert wines.

Zierfandler (ZEER-fand-ler)

Austrian variety with powerful orange/spice flavors and considerable body weight. Blended with rotgipfler to make a powerful spicy white that is a specialty of Austria’s Thermenregion.

Vespaiola (ves-PIE-o-la)

Native grape of the Veneto region of Italy where it is the source primarily of honeyed sweet wines.

Vidal (vee-DAHL)

French-American hybrid created in France in the 1930s by Jean-Louis Vidal who was hoping to invent a hearty variety that could be used in making Cognac. Vidal’s parents are trebbiano Toscano (ugni blanc) and rayon… Continue reading

Vidiano (vid-ee-AH-noh)

Greek variety that almost became extinct in the 20th century, but is now seeing a revival on the island of Crete.

Vignoles (veen-YOLE)

French-American hybrid also known as Ravat 51. The biggest plantings in the United States are in Missouri where it is used to make both dry and sweet wines.

Viognier (vee-oh-NYAY)

A Los Angeles restaurateur once described viognier this way: “If a good German riesling is like an ice skater (fast, racy, with a cutting edge), and chardonnay is like a middle-heavyweight boxer (punchy, solid, powerful),… Continue reading

Viosinho (vee-oh-ZEEN-yo)

Relatively old variety native to the Douro Valley of Portugal. One of the grapes used in white Port and in the dry table wines of the Douro Valley region.

Vitovska (Vee-TOVE-skah)

Grown in the Isonzo and Carso regions of eastern Friuli-Venezia Giulia and across the border in Carso/Kras region of Slovenia. Makes fascinating, fleshy dry white wines with elegant, floral, herbal, and fruit flavors. A surprising… Continue reading

Viura (VYOUR-a)

The leading white variety in Spain’s Rioja region, where it is the source of simple, dry whites. In the Penedes region where it’s used to make Spanish sparkling wine (cava), it’s known as macabeo. A… Continue reading

Welschriesling (WELSH-REEZ-ling)

The name Austrians use for the grape graševina, which is thought to have originated in Croatia (where it is the leading white grape variety). Used in Austria, especially in Burgenland, to make delicious late harvest… Continue reading