We asked a simple question on social media: what are your top 3 white wine grape varieties? The reaction…blew us away, as a torrent of fascinating responses from all around the world featured more than 100 different grape varieties – not to mention fighting talk, bonding, football analogies and cheating.

Our aim was to do a short podcast about all this, to identify the overall top three – and, ultimately, the best white wine grape. We ended up getting over-excited and producing our LONGEST PODCAST EVER. Sorry.

Please do forgive us…and bear with us, because there’s something for everyone here – laughter, tears, David Beckham, sherry, scholarship (in the form of an interview with fascinating expert Dr José Vouillamoz and constant references to the definitive tome that is Wine Grapes), Riesling controversy, Muse and…picking your favourite lovers.

Oh, and we give the DEFINITIVE verdict on the best white wine variety. End of.

‘The original wild grapevine, from which all vines descend, was red. Whites are an accidental mutation.’ Dr José Vouillamoz

Running Order

  • Introduction: 0 – 14.57
  • Interview with Dr José Vouillamoz: 14.58 – 27.20
  • Nik Darlington’s controversial take on Riesling: 33.37 – 34.08
  • END: 49.00

‘If David Beckham were a grape, which one would he be?’


‘My top three white grape varieties? Arvine. Terrantez do Pico. Voskeat.’ Dr José Vouillamoz

Featured Wine

  • Very Rare Amontillado, Lustau


  • One key thing to come out of this debate was: THE WORLD DESPERATELY NEEDS A WHITE WINE EMOJI.
  • In this episode, we reach a definitive verdict on what the best grape variety for white wine is. Just so you know.
  • We have to give the amazing work of scholarship that is Wine Grapes a proper plug. It’s THE book.
  • We had more than 100 white grapes championed as favourites. That’s a lot – but just to put this into perspective, Dr José reckons there could be 10,000 different grape varieties in the world.
  • We’d like to formally apologise to the rock band Muse. Listen to find out why.
  • Don’t know what a retrotransposant is? Neither did we. We do now. Thanks Dr J.
  • We’re also now clearer on how many babies were named Chardonnay in the 1990s. And how this trend has changed over time.
  • Coming soon to a podcast near you: The WORST white wine grapes…

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