Types of Wine in Kenya - Top Wine Varieties in 2023
An introduction to the world of wine can be utterly overwhelming with literally thousands of wine varieties. It can be quite confusing in figuring out what is what and which is the best wine for you. How you choose the right wine for you depends on how good you know your wine, and the distinction between types. If you are a wine person you should know by now that wine is made from white or red grapes (Vitis vinifera). Apart from presenting you with rare and best quality wines from all over the world, Drinks Zone Wine Shop in Nairobi is committed to make you a wine nerd by educating you on the types of wine and how to choose the best bottle. The next time you shop for a bottle of wine, you will know exactly what to expect. Here is a broad classification of wines.
Types of Wine in Kenya
It takes a lot of knowledge to sound sophisticated in describing red wines. With different varietals, vintages, vineyards, terroir, and tannins, there can be hundreds of red wine styles. Each red wine has its unique characteristics, and that is how wine enthusiasts develop favorites. Red wines can be broadly categorized into two major styles; red sweet wine and red dry wine. Most red sweet wine brands in Kenya are a blend of different grapes and contain residual sugar. On the other hand, the red dry wine brands can be varietal wines or a blend of two or more grape varieties. Varietal red dry wines are by far the most popular wine types in Kenya.
Types of Red Wine in Kenya
- Cabernet Sauvignon
- Pinot Noir
- Cabernet Franc
Like red wines, there are hundreds of white wine varieties with thousands of subtle differences, tasting notes, flavors, and accents. White wines are typically yellowish gold in color. They are produced from white grapes (which are actually green or lightly colored) which are fermented without their skins. Some white wines, including some Champagne, are made from red grapes, fermented without their skins.
There is a popular belief that white wines are less sophisticated than red wines. Let’s set the record straight! White wines can be as complex as red wines and just as delicious. You just have to learn the different types of white wines brands and their characteristics. If you prefer floral, acidic, or fruity flavors and a lighter, fresh, and less tannic feel, you should shop for white wine.
There is a lot of similarity in the categorization of white and red wines. There are both white sweet wines and white dry wines in Kenya. Some present as blends and others as varietals, made from a single grape variety.
White Wine Types in Kenya
- Pinot Gris
- Sauvignon Blanc
- Pinot Grigio
- Chenin Blanc
Shop for the best white wine brands in Kenya at Drinks Zone online liquor shop. We have both white sweet wine brands and dry white wines available at the best prices. Order for home delivery at no extra cost.
Rose wines are made from red grapes and the grape juice is allowed to stay in contact with the skins for a relatively short time. Once the desired color is realized, the juice is separated from the grape skins and fermented on its own. Pinot Noir grape is the most popular for making rose wines. Rose wines are pink in color but the hue is different across brands. Just like other wine types, rose wines have different styles, textures and are equally complex. There are both sweet and dry rose wines, presenting as crisp and refreshing on the palate.
Due to a shorter period of contact with grape skins, rose wines are less tannic, have a lighter feel, and make a great accompaniment to different dishes. Rose wines are known to be the best summer drinks, which means they can be enjoyed all year long in Kenya. After all, we have the sun all the time. Lucky us! At Drinks Zone, we have the best rose wine brands sourced from all over the globe; from France to Italy, to California, to Spain, to South Africa, and from many other popular wine-producing regions on the planet.
Sparkling wines have become synonymous with celebrations. They are the cheaper alternatives to Champagne. While Champagne is the most popular bubbly for a celebration, it should not be the only option you should have. There are a variety of high-quality sparkling wines that can equally grace your occasion, if not more. Sparkling wine can either be a white or rose, but there are red varieties too, identifiable by its fizzy nature. These wines are more sophisticated than their still counterparts, considering that they undergo two fermentations. The primary fermentation is similar to the fermentation of still wines. The secondary fermentation is where the bubbles are formed by trapping carbon dioxide in the bottle. The bubbles are formed from natural fermentation occurring inside a tank or bottle.
There are low-quality sparkling wines where carbon dioxide is added to the wine, meaning it is not formed naturally through fermentation. These sparkling wines are usually cheap, and as expected, are not as rich and flavorful as those undergoing two fermentations. Sparkling wines come in different styles and different levels of sweetness. Sparkling wine can be Brut Nature, Extra Brut, Brut, Extra Dry, Sec, Demi-sec, or Doux.
Champagne is sparkling wine. However, for a sparkling wine to be considered Champagne, it must be produced in the Champagne region of France and must be made following the guidelines called Methode Champenois. Champagne is usually high-quality and luxurious drink that is popularly used in celebrations. It is mostly made by blending 3 grapes; Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier. On sweetness levels, there are important terms you will encounter on a Champagne label that tell you much about the contents. Such include Brut Absolut, Brut, Extra-Dry, Sec, and Demi-Sec. The most popular types of champagne are;
Blanc de Blancs Champagne - This type of champagne is made exclusively from Chardonnay grapes and tends to be lighter and more delicate in style.
Blanc de Noirs Champagnes - this champagne is made from red grapes and tends to be fuller-bodied and richer tasting;
Rose Champagnes - rose types are dark pink and frequently intensely flavored.
Brut - Brut is the driest and is considered the standard champagne.
Vintage bottles - these are like most wines, from a single year's grapes. Vintage Champagne wine is only produced when the weather is favorable for the grapes ripening that will assure a wine of superior quality. There is also the unlabeled or non-vintage bottles which are from a mixture of years
Fortified wines are made by adding a neutral spirit, usually brandy (although any neutral spirit from grain, cane, sugar beets, or grapes can be used) in a process called fortification. Contrary to the popular belief, this wine is not distilled. The high alcohol content is due to the addition of spirits. Mixing this wine with the distilled spirit increases its alcohol content which is way higher than other wines. The wine fortifying was initially used for preservation and has continued to be used because it enhances the wine's natural flavors. Fortified wines usually undergo wood cask maturation and the aging period depends on the type of fortified wine. They are available in both white and red variations and sometimes rose. Most fortified wine brands have no additional flavoring agents.
Port wines are sweet fortified wines from Portugal popularly used as dessert wines or as digestifs. For a fortified wine to be called Port wine or Porto, it has to be made in the Duoro Valley of Portugal. Port wines are usually made in two major styles; tawny port and ruby port. Like other fortified wines, there are red, white, and rose ports available in sweet, dry, or semi-dry styles.
Port wines are made from grapes that are only cultivated in the Duoro Valley in Portugal. Red ports are the most popular although white ports have a significant market share as well. The process of port winemaking starts just like other wines, and the distinction comes with fortification. The wine is fermented up to 7% alcohol content and then a neutral spirit is added to the base wine. This stops fermentation and increases alcohol content while retaining residual sugars which impart sweetness. Aging comes after fortification for 18 months, which is followed by blending with other batches into a finished product. The wine can be bottled or aged further to make aged port wines.
Types of Port Wines in Kenya
- Ruby Porto
- Tawny Porto
- Vintage port wine
- White port wine
- Rose port wine
- Colheita port wine
You can buy the best port wine online at Drinks Zone, and enjoy free wine delivery in Nairobi and the best port wine prices in Kenya.
You may have heard about vermouths mostly as ingredients in making cocktails. Vermouth is a fortified and aromatized wine. The wine is usually fortified with a neutral spirit like brandy, then infused with spices and herbs, and sweetened. There are 2 major types of vermouth wines: Red sweet vermouth, which is largely associated with Italy, and white dry vermouth, which originally hails from France.
Apart from being used in cocktails, vermouths make great aperitifs. They impart flavor and aroma to popular cocktails served in your favorite spot. With Drinks Zone as your favorite online liquor shop, you can get vermouths delivered alongside your favorite spirit and you can make homemade cocktails. Order online to get the best vermouth prices and free delivery in Nairobi.
Non-alcoholic wine has no alcohol. One may wonder if it doesn’t have alcohol, isn’t it grape juice? It’s surely more than that. Non-alcoholic wines are made in the same way as alcoholic wines. They undergo the same process including fermentation, aging that adds flavor, tannins, and complexity. However, the final process involves dealcoholizing the final product by distillation or filtration. In the end, the alcohol-free wine is equally complex and with great flavors as alcoholic wine. This process of making non-alcoholic wine can be applied to any wine category. This means it’s possible to make non-alcoholic sparkling wines, non-alcoholic champagne, red wines, white wines, or even non-alcoholic rose wines.
The good thing with non-alcoholic wines is that they can be enjoyed by any group including pregnant mothers and those who are not of a legal alcohol drinking age. Discover the best non-alcoholic wine brands at Drinks Vine wine shop and order your favorite online.
The criterion of categorizing wine is not limited to the above method. There are other wine categories like expensive wines, cheap wines, light-bodied wines, full-bodied wines, medium-bodied wines, and many other categorizations. However, the method used in this article is the most popular, since all wines will fall under any of the mentioned categories. With this new or supplement knowledge, you can now comfortably order wine online at Drinks Zone. We have the best wine prices in Kenya accompanied by a free wine delivery service in Nairobi that takes 10 to 30 minutes. Shop now to get the best wine deals!