Log In / Join Now

Ask Dr. Vinny



Do you have a question for Dr. Vinny? Ask it here...

Dear Dr. Vinny,

I'm looking for a dry white wine that doesn't taste like pears. Any suggestions?

—Patricia, Lackawaxen Township, Pa.

Dear Patricia,

Not a fan of pears, eh? This is actually a tricky question, because we’ve never tasted wine together, and I’m not sure if your “pear” descriptor might be the way I describe “yellow apples” or “quince.” I don’t know anything about what kind of styles of wines you like or what your budget is. Yet even though I can’t promise you that you’ll never taste a note of pear ever again, I’m up for the challenge!

I mostly find myself using “pear” to describe Chardonnay, Pinot Gris and Pinot Grigio, Roussanne and Riesling. That means I’m less likely (but it’s not unheard of!) to find pear in Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Viognier, Moscato, Gewürztraminer and Sémillon, so give those a try!

I suggest that the next time you are ordering a white wine in a restaurant or buying a bottle in a shop, go ahead and tell them that you don’t like pear flavors, but then also mention what flavors you do prefer. “I tend to like my whites more on the floral side,” or, “If you have a crisp, citrusy white, that’s more my style,” or, “Which wine on the list has the most tropical fruit flavors?” That will help someone guide you to your next terrific glass of wine.

—Dr. Vinny

Wine Basics

We break down the basics—how to taste, serve, store and more. Plus:
» Maps of major wine regions
» Grape variety characteristics

How-to Videos

Learn to taste wine like a pro, pull a cork with flair, get great wine service in a restaurant and more

Wine Spectator School: All courses are FREE for WineSpectator.com Members

Learn from the experts and get the most out of each sip. Take one of our online courses or take them all—from the ABCs of Tasting to in-depth seminars on Food Pairing, California Cabernet, Bordeaux, Tuscany, Sensory Evaluation and more.

Browse our course catalog
Check out the professional wine sales and service courses
Learn Wine Forum: Got questions? Get answers


WineRatings+ app: Download now for 365,000+ ratings.