New Resource: The Grape Variety Archive

Wine Grapes, by Robinson-Harding-Vouillamoz, Allen Lane 2012

I would like to share with you all a pretty cool new wine-related resource that just recently went live on this blog and on Flora’s Table: I am talking about a new page called Grape Variety Archive that combines alphabetically, in one centralized spot, all the information about the grape varieties of the wines that I have reviewed, so that such information may be easily referred to by readers.

What’s even better is that all of the grape variety information on the Grape Variety Archive has been taken from the wonderfully educational, gorgeously illustrated and scientifically researched volume “Wine Grapesauthored by Jancis Robinson, Julia Harding and Jose Vouillamoz, Allen Lane 2012. Wine Grapes is an impressive 1,242 page long collection of detailed and up to date information about 1,368 vine varieties from all over the world. Quoting directly from the Web site dedicated to the book:

Where do wine grapes come from and how are vine varieties related to each other? What is the historical background of each grape variety? Where are they grown? What sort of wines do they make? Using the most cutting-edge DNA analysis and detailing almost 1,400 distinct grape varieties, as well as myriad correct (and incorrect) synonyms, this particularly beautiful book examines viticulture, grapes and wine as never before. Here is a complete, alphabetically presented profile of all grape varieties relevant to today’s wine lover.

I don’t think I need to say much about the authors, as if you are into wine they are all very well known, but just in case: Jancis Robinson has been a wine writer since 1975 and the Financial Times’s wine correspondent since 1989. Her principal occupation now is taking care of her own Web site,, which gets updated daily. Julia Harding is a linguist, an editor and a qualified Master of Wine. She is Jancis Robinson’s full-time assistant and “associate palate”. Dr José Vouillamoz is a Swiss botanist and grape geneticist of international repute. He was trained in grape DNA profiling and parentage analyses in the world-famous laboratory of Professor Carole Meredith at the University of California at Davis.

And speaking of the authors, I wish to take the opportunity to sincerely thank them for being so kind and generous as to grant me permission to pull together and publish the Grape Variety Archive page, which I think can become over time a great resource for gaining a quick snapshot of the various varieties that make up the wines that I review on this blog, beside giving readers an idea of the amazing wealth of information that can be found in Wine Grapes.

Wine Grapes, by Robinson-Harding-Vouillamoz, Allen Lane 2012

If you read this and are seriously into wine, I think you should definitely consider acquiring Wine Grapes as it will provide a ton of invaluable information about everything that you may want to know about grape varieties. Besides, let me tell you: Dr Vouillamoz’s DNA profiling work about all the grape varieties in the book is nothing short of unbelievable and well worth the price of the book in and of itself!

Please check our new page out and let me know what you think!

Oh, one final note: congratulations to fellow wine blogger and friend Oliver AKA The Winegetter who has been the first one to like the new page, even before its official roll out! Thank you, Oliver!  🙂


12 thoughts on “New Resource: The Grape Variety Archive

  1. the winegetter

    Yay, me being a stalker is finally being praised…that’s a new thing for me. 🙂

    Seriously, I am very impressed and think it is great you got the permission from the authors. Did Jancis herself reply?? I would have been giddy with excitement if that had happened to me. I know my crush on her,

    I also liked that you showed a photo of the pages, opened at the Chasselas grape. Very obscure. I was thinking about Chasselas the other day, because I haven’t had one in ages, and I doubt they export it out of Switzerland. Could be a reason to go back there…

    1. Stefano Post author

      Well, you know I like to keep it fresh here, Mr Wine Stalker! 😉
      No, it was not Jancis, it was Julia who is really super nice and kind and getting an email from her is something that I found way cool just as well. By the way, reading your comment just made me realize that having a “crush” on a wine woman is the most appropriate thing to have! 😉
      And yes, regarding the grape sketch, I thought everyone could pick a Chardonnay or a Cab, right?!? Let’s keep things a little weird, for Pete’s sake! 😉
      Thanks for your comment and glad you liked the idea, my friend!

  2. ChgoJohn

    Congratulations on gaining the authors’ approval and for creating such a worthwhile page. This will become a great resource that many are sure to use. Thanks, Stefano.


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