Carménère produces wines with good, plummy fruit, like Merlot, and firm structure, similar to Cabernet Sauvignon. The grape kicks in a heady dose of pepper and spice, which helps distinguish it from other varietals.
Cooler climates like New Zealand and Chablis lead to crisp, acid-prone wines, while warmer climates like southern California and Australia foster riper grapes that create heavier wine leaning towards tropical fruit flavors.
Merlot from mountain areas are usually more Cabernet like, with stronger structure and tannins; while Merlot from valley floor areas and clay-based soils are opulent, with velvety textures, often approachable when young.
Riesling has an extremely high level of acidity. That acidity is matched by the intensity of the grape’s floral and fruit aromas. A number of descriptors are associated with Riesling due to its tendency to adopt the characteristics of where it is grown.
Like many world-popular grapes, Syrah (also known as Shiraz) can differ in style depending on the climate, region and winemaking techniques. Typical aromas and flavors from most Syrah-based wines include pepper, blackberry and leather or smoke.