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Which grape variety was traditionally used to make Vermouth?  

A. Muscat

B. Vermentino

C. Müller-Thurgau

D. Sauvignon Blanc

A.

Vermouth originated in Piedmont, Italy, in the 18th century. Historically, Muscat grapes were used as the base wine. The Muscat (Moscato) typically grown in Piedmont is known as Moscato Canelli or Moscato Bianco (white Muscat) and is the same as Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains in France. Because Muscat is a white grape, most Vermouth was originally white. Today, Vermouth is made in several countries and in addition to Muscat, the base wine can be made from any number of different varieties, from Catarratto grapes (Sicily), to Viura grapes (Spain), to Ugni Blanc (France), as well as other white and red varieties. Needless to say, the quality of the Vermouth is highly dependent on the quality of the base wine. Vermouth is also lightly fortified and infused with a (usually secret) blend of dozens, sometimes hundreds, of aromatic botanicals including spices, barks, roots, and bitter herbs. Several cocktails are dependent on fine Vermouth including Martinis, Manhattans, and Negronis.

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