How Much Do You Know About Wine?



By: Emily Maggrett

6 Min Quiz

Image: Klaus Vedfelt/DigitalVision/GettyImages

About This Quiz

You don't have to be an oenophile to love drinking wine! From deep, jammy South African reds to bone-dry French whites, every wine has a story to tell, about where it's from, the climate where it was grown and the skills of the vintner who made it. Is there a more delicious way to learn about other cultures?

In this quiz, we're going to be testing you on your knowledge of various wine qualities, from color to scent to flavor to region of origin. We're going beyond reds and whites to ask you about wines that are pink, gold, brown and even purple. You'll need to know your French and Italian wines of course, but we're going to be asking you about German, Spanish, South African, Australian and even Canadian wines as well.

You'll also need to know which wines go with which foods. A certain white might pair beautifully with shellfish, while a certain red is ideal for serving with peppered steak. Even if you don't know your wine and food pairings very well, we're certain you'll pick up some interesting ideas for your next dinner party.

So are you ready? Then pull up a chair, open a bottle of Petit Sirah, Chenin Blanc or Viognier, and let's do this!

This sweet German white wine is perfect for imbibing after dessert.

Grown in Germany's Rhine region, Riesling is a white wine grown from Riesling grapes. Pair it with cheese and nuts after you've finished dessert, or eat it with Indian or Thai food.


This flavorful white wine is famous for its oaky notes.

A creamy white concocted from Chardonnay grapes, this white wine is extremely popular. Its buttery notes go well with seafood, especially lobster.


Aromatic and spicy, this red wine is made from a mix of red grape varietals of French origin.

This California-based red wine type is blended from a variety of grapes of French origin, which may include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Petit Verdot, St. Macaire, Gros Verdot or Carmenère grapes. Meritage wines are generally made in the Bordeaux style but are American, rather than French.


This delicate red wine was the topic of a movie starring Paul Giamatti.

"Sideways" stars Paul Giamatti as a struggling writer on a road trip who is obsessed with Pinot Noir, due to how difficult the Pinot Noir grapes are to grow properly. A delicious wine, Pinot Noir grows most successfully in slightly rainy regions, such as Oregon and France's Burgundy region.


This well-known red wine is big, bold and brash!

Merlot wines are made from the intense, dark blue Merlot grape. Grown all over the world, the Merlot grape is fertile, ripens easily and thrives in cold weather. Drink Merlot with meals that feature other big flavors, such as lamb or veal.


If you like jammy, rich wines, we bet you're a fan of this red, which is often grown in Australia and South Africa.

Syrah is made from Syrah grapes, which are sometimes also called Shiraz grapes. Ideal for growing in hot, dry climates, Syrah is grown in Chile, Argentina, Australia, South Africa, Spain and other countries.


Dry and light, this white wine offers citrus notes.

A delicious wine which pairs well with chicken, Sauvignon Blanc is made from white Sauvignon grapes. Its name means "wild white", a moniker likely given because of its herbaceous flavors, which distinguish it from sweeter, milder white wines.


A crisp, easy-drinking white wine from Italy, this varietal has a slightly bitter edge which pairs well with fish.

Pinot Gris wines are made from a white mutation of the Pinot Noir grape. In the countries that make Pinot Gris wines, different facets of Pinot Gris are emphasized, depending on national tastes. For instance, American Pinot Gris are much sweeter and fruitier than Italian Pinot Gris (where they call it Pinot Grigio).


This red wine needs time to age in order for its rich complexity to emerge.

Cabernet Sauvignon is the world's most popular red wine. The red Cabernet grape was invented in France sometime between the 16th and 17th centuries. Due to its fantastic flavor, Cabernet Sauvignon wines are some of the most expensive in the world.


This medium-bodied red wine has fruity notes which pair well with spicy food.

Zinfandel is made from Zinfandel grapes, which are related to some of the earliest wine grape varietals in Croatia. Lighter than a Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon, red Zinfandel wines are ideal for eating with a range of foods, since they are not particularly acidic.


A bold Tuscan wine with plenty of tannins, this red wine varietal is often drunk with rich food.

Sangiovese is the most commonly planted grape in Italy, although it's seldom planted elsewhere. It's made in two major styles, fruit-forward and traditional, or rustic. Favored by Italians, traditional Sangioveses are dry, rough and wonderful with beef.


This wine, which is made from raisins rather than grapes, packs a big punch!

Straw wine is so-called because it's traditionally made by allowing grapes to dry out on straw mats. Because it's made from raisins, which are sweeter than grapes, straw wine has a higher percentage of alcohol than other wines. Famous straw wines include Amarone and Recioto della Valpolicella.


Oaky and fruity, the best examples of this red wine are often grown in Argentina.

Malbec is made from the French Malbec grape, but it actually grows best in Argentina, which produces most of the world's Malbec wines. Its deep purple color is striking. Gourmands appreciate Malbec for its smoky undertones, which go well with vegetarian entrees that feature mushrooms or blue cheese.


This sweet, sparkling wine is named after its pink hue.

Rosé wine gets its wonderful color by being made from red grapes which have been allowed to soak alongside their skins. After a few days, the skins are strained out, leaving the young wine pink but not red. Rosé wines only became popular a few years ago, but now they are ubiquitous, even in France.


Hailing originally from Portugal, this fortified wine is known for its potency.

This Portuguese wine may be red, rosé, tawny or white. Serve it with chocolate or poured over ice cream for a very adult treat.


This medium-bodied red wine tastes like berries and spice, and is often grown in Spain and France.

Grenache is made from the Spanish Garnacha grape. But French wines made from Garnacha, called Grenache, have eclipsed Spanish Garnachas in fame, especially Rhone wines like the Châteauneuf-du-Pape blend.


A soft, low-alcohol red, this Spanish wine has black fruit flavors.

Tempranillo wines are all made from Tempranillo grapes, but have many different names. Argonez, Tinto Fino, Tinto Del Pais, Tinta de Toro and Tinta Rouriz are some of Tempranillo's aliases.


Some people call this Spanish white wine Sauvignon Blanc's cousin.

Made from Verdejo grapes, which may originally be from Africa, Verdejo is a delicate white wine with mineral undertones. Drink it in the summer, by itself or with a hearty fish stew.


A sparkling white that is NOT champagne, this wine hails from Italy.

Asti Spumante is sweet, inexpensive and not particularly serious. Made from white Moscato grapes, this is the perfect wine for a sleepover or dance party.


This fortified Spanish wine has an amber color.

A dark fortified wine, sherry is a popular sipping beverage among older age groups. But younger wine drinkers shouldn't discount sherry. As it matures in wood casks and may be aged for decades, different styles of sherry have a variety of characteristics, ranging from creamy to dry to sweet.


A floral white, this French white wine pairs well with turkey, chicken and spicy dishes.

One of the fuller white wines, Viognier comes from Southern France. It's aged in oak like Chardonnay and is similar to that wine, but less acidic. Viognier grapes grow well in hot regions with cold nights, like Northern California, Eastern Washington and the Rhone Valley in France.


This citrus-y white wine has pleasantly herbal notes.

Yet another French white wine, Semillon is a fantastic yet inexpensive wine. With notes of green apple, lemon, pear and saffron, Semillon tastes great alongside sushi, curry and roasted vegetables.


An extremely dry red wine, this Italian wine goes well with pizza or pasta.

Chianti is a blended wine, made from Sangiovese grapes mixed with Canaiolo, Colorino and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. It's important to Italian cooking because it pairs well with tomatoes!


A floral, aromatic German white, this wine goes well with cheese.

Although it's not Asian in origin, Gewürztraminer tastes similar to lychee fruit, making it ideal to pair with Asian cuisine as well as with cheese or nuts. Rather sweet in flavor, Gewürztraminer has been made into wines by Germans since the Middle Ages.


This French wine tastes like plums and is the color of rubies.

Their names may sound the same, but Petite Sirah and Syrah are not the same wine! In fact, Petite Syrahs are made from the Durif grape. However, California wine marketers didn't like the Durif name and started calling Durif wine "Petite Sirah", in order to entice buyers. The plan may have worked too well, confusing consumers.


Made primarily in Sicily, this wine is often used for cooking.

Similar to sherry, Marsala is a fortified wine which can enhance both savory and sweet dishes, such as the famous Italian dishes Veal Marsala and Chicken Marsala.


Often used as a mixer in cocktails, this white wine is both fortified and flavored with herbs, roots, bark, flowers and other botanicals.

Originally created for medicinal purposes, modern vermouth comes in two flavors, red and white. Most often used in cocktails, red vermouth is sweet. White vermouth may be served up on its on with a twist of lemon, but is essential to making a good martini.


Very dry and light, this French white wine possesses mineral-like notes.

Muscadet is a flavorful, green yet inexpensive wine from the Loire Valley in France. Pair it with seafood, especially mussels, oysters and shrimp. French cooks love adding Muscadet to a number of dishes.


Made from honey, this wine possesses a great sweetness.

Mead is made from fermented honey. While it has been made on many continents since ancient history, it is associated with Vikings in popular culture. As it is extremely sweet, many modern drinkers prefer consuming mead as part of a cocktail, rather than by itself.


This term refers to any wine that comes from this region in France, regardless of its varietal.

Burgundy wines may be red or white. Common types include Pinot Noir, White Burgundy and Chardonnay. If we made a list of the world's most expensive wines, Burgundies would definitely be on it!


Made from frozen grapes, this wine is extra sweet and extra acidic.

Primarily made in cold climates, ice wines have much to recommend them, if you don't mind their sharp sweetness. Although they date back to Roman times, today ice wines are produced in Northern Europe, Japan, Canada and the U.S.


A fruity, peppery Italian red, this wine is made from black Sicilian grapes.

Like your wines velvety? Nero d'Avola delivers. This fruity concoction is similar to Syrah, yet has a character all its own. Try it at your next barbecue.


This wine is made from ingredients you can find in your front yard.

Dandelion Wine isn't just the title of a Ray Bradbury novel. It's also a humble, homemade wine, made from this common weed. Dandelion wine is herbaceous, mildly alcoholic and is used in some regions as a spring tonic.


This French white wine, which tastes of peaches and melon, is often blended with other varietals.

Chenin Blanc wines have been made since the 9th century. Although French in origin, South Africa also produces many fine, fruity Chenin Blancs.


Made from an old grape varietal, this Italian red wine is juicy, with pleasant cherry notes.

Barbera grapes are almost a thousand years older than Cabernet grapes! But the charm of this red wine lies in its everyday drinkability. Its berry flavors please many palates, and it's low on tannins, which can turn novice wine drinkers off.


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