white vs red wine



Difference between red and white wine 1

There are two major factors that divide white wine making and red wine making

  1. Color of Grapes Used to Make Wine

Any color of grape can be used to make a white wine, but red and rose wines can only be made from dark-skinned grapes.

  1. Contact between Grape Juice and Grape Skins during Fermentation

All grape juice is clear, while only the skins have color. If the grape skins are dark enough and if they are fermented together with the grape juice, the wine will be red.

If the grape skins are removed and discarded before fermentation begins, the wine will be white, regardless of the color of the grape skins.

The basic difference between red wine and white wine

  • Ingredients

In red wine making whole dark/red grapes are used while in white wine making light/green colored grapes or juice of red grapes are used.

  • Tannins

Red wine usually contains a much higher amount of tannins than white wine

  • Taste

Red wines tend to be fuller bodied, richer, and have a more complex flavor profile. This includes flavors ranging from fruity to spicy.

On the other hand, white wines are lighter, have crisp fruity flavor and aroma and often include hints of citrus and other fruits.

  • Serving temperature

Red wines are served cool i.e. at 18-20 deg Celsius while white wines are best served chilled i.e. at 10-12 deg Celsius.

  • Serving glasses

Red wines are best served in large sized rounder glasses. This will allow the air to come into contact with an enlarged wine surface and develop the aromas and flavors.  White wines require medium sized glasses with narrow bowl so that fresh, fruity characteristics are gathered and directed towards the top of the glass.


  • Decanting/ breathing

Red wines need to breathe to open up flavors. White wines are usually ready to drink right after opening.

  • Foods to pair with

Red wine typically pairs well with red meat, White wine can be better with fish or chicken.

  • Health benefits

Red wine contains more antioxidants than white wine, which may help to prevent cardiovascular diseases by raising good cholesterol level and protecting the arteries from damage.

  • Common types

Red wine: – Shiraz, cabernet sauvignon, zinfandel, merlot, malbec, pinot noir, sangiovese.

White wine: – chenin blanc, Sauvignon blanc, chardonnay, Riesling, viognier, muscat, Semillon.