Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, but you can call me Vinny. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the fine points of etiquette to the science of winemaking. And don't worry, I'm no wine snob—you can also ask me those "dumb questions" you're too embarrased to ask your wine geek friends! I hope you find my answers educational, empowering and even amusing. And don't forget to check out my most asked questions and my full archives for all my Q&A classics.
Dear Dr. Vinny,
Can you make white wine with red grapes?
—Stayam, Dehli, India
Yes, it's possible to make a white wine from red wine grapes. Rather than extracting flavors and colors from the red grape skins, they limit contact with the skins. The juice from red wine grapes can be pretty clear on its own. I’m most familiar with a version of Pinot Noir that’s white and has a lovely baked apple and ginger profile, much different from a typical red version.
Of course, I should remind you that traditional Champagne and sparkling wines are made from Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier—the latter two are red wine grapes. That’s another example of a white, in this case bubbly, made from red wine grapes.