tout savoir sur le vin blanc

All about white wine

Among the 3 colors of wine, white wine is often the one we serve more readily when looking for sweet and fresh flavors. Whether to accompany a light dish, or to cool off on a hot summer day, white wines come in a multitude of varieties, each with its own characteristics. From sweet wine to dry wine, discover all the secrets of white wines .


The grape varieties used to make white wine

The greatest specificities of a wine essentially come from the grape variety used for its production. The variety of grapes has an influence on the aromas and structure of the wine. To make white wine, the winegrowers then use many white grape varieties , of which here are the main ones:

  • White muscat : this family, comprising several grape varieties, gives wines fruity aromas of musk and grapefruit. It is mainly grown in Alsace, Australia and Italy;
  • Riesling : known for offering very fragrant wines, this white grape variety from Alsace and Germany gives aromas of cinnamon, lemon, lime blossom... It is a grape variety also used to make sparkling wines, and in particular Crémant d'Alsace;
  • Gewurztraminer : very aromatic, this variety of white grape is distinguished by notes of exotic fruits (pineapple, lychee), but also rose and nutmeg;
  • Chardonnay : renowned for producing the best white wines in the world, and particularly the white wines of Burgundy and the white wines of the Loire Valley, Chardonnay gives aromas of peach, lychee, citrus, butter and pear ;
  • Sauvignon blanc : grown all over the world, this variety reveals wines with flavors of green fruit, grass, apple and mint;
  • Muscadelle : this white Bordeaux grape variety makes it possible to produce excellent syrupy and sweet wines;
  • Pinot Gris : native to the far east of France, this grape variety is a must in Alsace wines. It offers well-structured and round wines on the palate, with notes of honey, smoke and sweet spices;
  • Chenin blanc : very present in the Loire Valley, this white grape variety produces sweet and dry wines, and it is also used to make sparkling wines (Crémant de Limoux and Crémant de Loire).


Of course, the choice of grape varieties depends on the wine regions. In Provence, for example, the most widely used white grape varieties are Semillon, Ugni Blanc, Clairette, and Vermentino (Rolle).


The vinification of white wines

The vinification technique for white wines depends on the know-how and choices of the winemaker. In general, the manufacturing process follows 7 stages, before bottling.

  • Grape harvesting : mature grapes can be harvested by hand (manual harvesting) or with a machine (mechanical harvesting). This first step requires delicacy to damage the fruit as little as possible;
  • Destemming and crushing (optional): these steps consist of removing the stalks (plant parts) from the grape berries, and breaking the grapes to separate the pulp and the skin, and release the juice;
  • Pressing : the grapes are then passed through a press to extract the juice;
  • Settling : the solid residues are then separated from the juice by decantation or centrifugation;
  • Sulphiting (optional): to stabilize the juice and slow down its oxidation, it is possible to add sulfur dioxide;
  • Alcoholic fermentation : placed in a vat, the juice ferments, and the yeasts naturally present transform the sugar into alcohol;
  • Ageing : placed in a barrel with the lees, the wine can then undergo malolactic fermentation. It is also possible to store the wine without the lees.

After a process of several weeks, all that remains is to proceed with the filtration of the wine, and the bottling.


All white wines and their specificities

If you look for bottles of white wine at your wine merchant, on an online wine store, or even in the wine section of a supermarket, you will notice that there are different types of white wines. They are then classified according to their residual sugar content.

Sweet white wines

Sweet wines are the sweetest white wines, with a residual sugar content of more than 45 grams per litre . They are also produced with late harvest grapes, and to accelerate the ripening of the grapes, the winemaker also adds water and gray rot.

Sweet white wines

Sweet white wines , also called sweet wines, have a residual sugar level of between 30 and 45 grams per liter of wine. They are usually made from late harvest grapes that are very ripe and very sweet. Sweet white wine is particularly appreciated to accompany foie gras.

Semi-dry white wines

With a residual sugar level between 2 and 30 grams , semi-dry white wine is lighter and more delicate. It goes wonderfully with fatty dishes, and has very pleasant fruity notes.

Dry white wines

Dry white wines have a residual sugar level of less than 2 grams per litre . They have the advantage of being soft on the palate and less sweet, leaving the aromas more freedom to express themselves. There are then several types of dry white wines:

  • The dry and fruity white wine , which reveals fruity aromas;
  • The dry and powerful white wine , which stands out for its intense taste.


The taste of white wines

Unlike red wines, the juice of white wines does not macerate with the skin of the grapes and the pips. Thus, we do not feel this rough feeling that we can have with red wines, because white wine does not contain tannin. It is then more lively in the mouth, lighter and rounder .

As for the aromas of white wines , these can vary greatly depending on the grape variety and the winemaking technique. We then find floral aromas (rose, jasmine, muscat...), mineral aromas (chalk, flint...), but above all fruity aromas (dried fruits, white fruits, yellow fruits, red fruits...) .

White wines for laying down can develop a complex aromatic palette with ageing, and develop tertiary aromas of vanilla, candied fruit, tobacco...


The color of white wines

The first step in a wine tasting is to analyze the color of the wines. The color of white wines then allows you to learn a little more about the characteristics of the cuvée, its grape variety, its wine-growing region...

In good tasting conditions, white wine can then reveal very varied colours: pale yellow color with green highlights, pale gold, straw yellow, golden, amber, red... In general, the younger a wine, the more it is pale, and the sweeter it is, the more its color is pronounced.


The best food and white wine pairings

To be able to highlight all the qualities of a good bottle, you have to be able to serve it with a dish that will know how to sublimate it. To achieve this perfect balance, certain rules are immutable.

  • Sweet and syrupy wines , such as yellow wine, sweet wines from Alsace or straw wine work wonders as an aperitif, but also with foie gras , blue-veined cheeses, or goat cheeses. If you want to serve a cheese platter , it is best to serve a sweet wine from the same region. Finally, you can also serve sweet wines for dessert , to end the meal in style;
  • Dry and fresh wines are particularly pleasant with seafood and shellfish. You can then turn to a wine from the Loire Valley, and why not a white from Alsace. With shellfish, whites from the Rhône Valley or Burgundy will highlight the salty side of the product. Finally, the dry white wine is also extraordinary with white meats or fish;
  • Semi-dry white wines know how to sublimate cheeses, and in particular fresh cheeses and pressed cheeses;
  • Mineral white wines are very pleasant as an aperitif , but also to accompany vegetables and soft cheeses.


Our selection of white wines

Do you want to complete your cellar with a wide variety of bottles of white wine? Or do you want to surprise your guests with an exceptional white wine? Here is a selection of the best white wines from our estates.


White wines offer such diversity that it is difficult not to find the bottle of wine that will seduce you. Then discover the different types of whites, from sweet wines to dry wines, let yourself be tempted by the white wines of our estates .


Our current wine selection

Sold Out
Red 2021 AOP Côtes du RhôneM. Chapoutier
1 bottle - 75cl
More info
New product
Rosé 2022 Pays d'Oc IGPPuech Haut Argali
1 bottle - 75 cl
More info
Sale -7%
White 2021 ChablisVieilles Vignes Les Malantes Jean Marc Brocard
Regular price €25Sale price€23,25
1 bottle - 75cl
More info
Rosé 2021 AOP Côtes de ProvenceGrande Récolte
Case of 6 bottles - 75 cl
More info