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Ohio Wine Varietals

So what types of wine can you expect to enjoy in Ohio? Many types of grapes successfully thrive in the soil across the state. And like these vines, the number of Ohio wineries and types of wine produced continue to grow.

Ohio has what is known as “cool climate viticulture”, similar to many European, Australian, and even California growing regions. The resulting wines made from cool climate grapes have full fruit flavors, but slightly higher acidity. The wines have a clean, crisp flavor and go very well with food.

Heritage Wines

Catawba (kuh-taw-buh)

Produced in both white & pink styles. Typically sweet with pronounced fruit flavor

Concord (Kon-kawrd)

Sweet with “grapey” aromas/flavor.

Niagara (Nahy-ag-ruh)

Fresh grape taste & finishes sweeter on palate.

Red Wines

Cabernet Franc (Cab-er-nay-Fronk)

Medium to full-bodied. Light bell pepper & spicy fruit attributes.

Chambourcin (Sham-boor-san)

Medium-bodied with flavors of cherry, plum & toasted oak.

Frontenac (Frotnak)

Light-bodied with aroma/flavor attributes of cherry & cranberry.

Cabernet Sauvignon (Cab-er-nay-So-vin-yawn)

Full-bodied, with ripe blackberry & currant. Often oaky.

Marquette – (Mahr-ket)

Medium-bodied with descriptors of black cherry & black pepper

Pinot Noir (Pe-no_Nwahr)

Medium-bodied with flavors/aromas of earth, smoke & cherry.

Syrah (Sir-rah)

Medium to full-bodied with flavors of blueberry, violet & cedar.

White Wines

Chardonnay/Chardonel (Shar-don-ay/Shar-don-el)

Fruit, apple, grapefruit, vanilla descriptors. Smokey/buttery

Gewurztraminer (Geh-vertz-tram-me-ner)

Spicy, lychee & citrus aromas. Dry to semi-sweet.

Pinot Gris/Grigio (Pee-no-gree/gree-gee-oh)

Bright & citrusy aromas. Hints of green apple & herbal flavors. Potentially oaky (Gris)

Traminette/Aromella/La Crescent (Tram-in-ette/Air-oh-mel-uh/Lah-kres-uh-nt)

Floral, tropical fruit & honey attributes. Crisp, off-dry to sweet.

Riesling/Vidal Blanc (Reez-ling/Vee-dall-Blonc)

Attributes of apple, peach, apricot & citrus. Dry to semi-sweet

Specialty Wines

Ice Wine

Honey and fruit flavors including peaches, apricots, and pineapple. Sweet. Best paired with dessert.

Port & Sherry

Sweet dessert wines made by adding grape spirits after fermentation. Flavors of sweet raisins, dates, almonds, chocolate and coffee.

Rosé and Blush

Light and fruity. Often white and red wine blended together to give a blush/rosé color.


Methode Champenoise style (Secondary fermentation in the bottle). Can be dry to semi-sweet.