This one is for all the dedicated chardonnay lovers out there. Fans of the lusher chardonnays, it’s time for you to meet viognier. This white Rhone grape was brought back from the brink of extinction and now enjoys newfound popularity among winemakers in France, California, and Australia. One thing to note—viognier is considerably more aromatic than your typical chardonnay. Juicy peach, mandarin orange, and honeysuckle are the prevalent flavors you’ll discover in a glass of viognier. As far as pairings go, treat viognier like a full-bodied chardonnay.
You’ll find Aglianico growing in vineyards throughout Campania and Basilicata in Italy where it makes concentrated, powerful red wines tasting of black cherry and plum, earth, spice, savory dried herbs, and smoke. Aglianico is a complex wine which can definitely age several years. Serve it with roasted meat and wild game dishes, rich tomato-based meat sauces, and hard cheeses.
Naturally, the list of wines to try goes well beyond this list! Recognizable wines like Zinfandel, Sangiovese, Tempranillo, and Chenin Blanc are never out of place on your wine rack, but you can look to slightly more niche varieties like Assyrtiko and Albariño (both white) and Barbera and Touriga Nacional (both red) to satisfy your taste buds. It’s just the excuse you needed to throw a wine tasting party!