About White Wines

White wines are those made from so-called "white" grapes, in which the skins have been removed form the juice before fermentation. This results in a white wine, yet the hue of a white wine ranges from straw to golden yellow and everything in between. As some grapes used for white wine have a pink or copper color (such as Gewurztraminer or Pinot Gris, respectively), white wines made form these varieties will tend to have a copper or slight golden or silver color.

As white wines age, these color deepens; this is the opposite of red wines, which get paler with time. Thus a white wine that was straw-colored upon release (aged solely in steel or cement tanks) will have a deep yellow color after a few years. A white wine will also have a deeper color upon release, if it was made with skin contact or aged in small, toasted oak barrels.

White wines are produced in every wine-producing country and are generally the most consumed in every country. Famous examples include wines made from varieties such as Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling and Pinot Gris (Pinot Grigio), while there are indigenous varieties in many countries such as Marsanne and Roussanne (France), Greco, Fiano and Arneis (Italy) and Viura (Spain).

White wines tend to have lower alcohol than reds - from 8% for German whites to 13.5% or 14% for some examples of Chardonnay- as opposed to 12% -15.5% for reds. They should be serve chilled and are best paired with seafood, pastas with cream sauces and white meats.

Top Picks for White Wines

Grgich Hills 2016 Estate Grown Fumé Blanc Napa Valley
95 points
$31
Clear yellow straw color. Grassy, green, herbal, funky aromas of harissa, green apple, papaya, and ripe pineapple with a fat body and a very long bell pepper , flint, lemon wedge, snipped chive, and apricot jam finish. A savory, flamboyant Sauvignon Blanc with killer minerality and style for days.
Perle de Mer 2017  Muscadet Sèvre et Maine Sur Lie
95 points
$17
Best Buy
Light straw color. Aromas of bouquet garni, crispy plantains, apple chutney, and wool with a round, vibrant, dry light-to-medium body and a smooth, complex, long wet stone, pineapple conserve, apricot skin, heirloom pear, jasmine, and white pepper finish with no oak flavor. A round, lengthy, and poignant Muscadet fit for only the finest seafood.
95 points $17 Best Buy
Tom Eddy 2016 Purrington Chardonnay
95 points
$75
Yellow straw color. Confected, baked aromas of apple streusel, walnut confection, baked pear with brown sugar glaze, and lemon bar with a round, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, complex, long toasted pecan and smoked vanilla bean finish with well-integrated, coating tannins and heavy oak flavor. A beautiful, complex, smoky Chardonnay that can compete with the best of them; relish now or cellar.
Adastra 2017  Chardonnay
94 points
$39
Bright gold color. Aromas of cinnamon-dusted toasted croissant, pineapple, mango, peach pie, and flint with a round, lively, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, elegant, long silky creme brulee, rum sauce, and hazelnut cream finish with well-integrated, silky tannins and heavy oak flavor. An oak-laden Chardonnay with silky texture and delectable fruit.
Kumeu River Vineyard 2017 Estate Chardonnay
94 points
$35
Golden straw color. Aromas of pineapple, roasted peach, vanilla gelato, freshly grated nutmeg, and suede with a silky, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, complex, long lemon chiffon and artisan toffee finish with well-integrated, soft, fruit tannins and light oak flavor. An elegant, creamy Chardonnay with seamless complexity and style.
Wakefield/Taylors 2018 Reserve Parcel Riesling
94 points
$25
Straw green color. Fruity aromas and flavors of pineapple, Asian pear, ripe peach, yuzu, musk, and honeycomb with a round, racy, dryish light-to-medium body and a smooth, delightful, medium-long finish displaying notes of cloudberry. A fruity and pure Riesling with cellar-worthy acidity; enjoy its freshness now or uncover greater complexity after several years in the cellar.
White Horse Winery 2017 Barrel Fermented Chardonnay
94 points
$29
Straw color. Aromas of honey-roasted pineapple, apple pastry, béchamel, and toast with a supple, lively, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length caramel, toasted pecan, and allspice finish. A toasty, well integrated Chardonnay for fans of Montrachet.
Jarvis 2017 Estate Grown Chardonnay
94 points
$80
Pale golden straw color. Fruity, oaky aromas and flavors of cedar embers, sliced apple, dried mango, and yellow plum with a supple, tangy, dry light-to-medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium-long finish that exhibits notes of pineapple core, granny smith , chai spice, crystallized honey, and caramel corn with fruit tannins and a suggestion of oak flavor. An instantly appealing Chardonnay with balanced fruit and oak.
Domaine le Montoire 2018  Sancerre
94 points
$50
Emerald straw color. Fruity, floral aromas and flavors of citrus marmalades and peach blossoms with a silky, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and an effortless, complex, long finish manifesting accents of tropical fruit melange, lemon curd, and hint of wheatgrass with no oak flavor. A sensationally fragrant and vibrant Sancerre that is a great example.
Cunningham Creek Winery 2017 Estate Grown Viognier
94 points
$26
Golden straw color. Tropical aromas and flavors of honey roasted tropical fruits, peach cobbler, honeysuckle on a cedar trellis, and pistachio oil with a velvety, soft, fruity medium-to-full body and an effortless, complex, long finish that shows accents of apple and pear sauce, pineapples in coconut milk, and white chocolate brittle with well-integrated tannins and a suggestion of oak flavor. A delicious, big, tropical viognier with lots of varietal character.