Category Archives: Muscat


The Muscat grape is one of the oldest grape varieties known to the wine world. Instead of being just one grape, Muscat encompasses a family of grapes, found in a range of hues – from white to brown to near black. The two best-known clones are Muscat Blanc a Petits Grains (Muscat blanc for short) and Muscat of Alexandria. The Muscat blanc grape is the oldest variety and creates the most concentrated grape flavors. Small in size, Muscat blanc is not always white and it can produce both dry and sweet wines. Muscat of Alexandria is larger and often darker than the Muscat Blanc, and creates wines of intense sweetness.

Notable Facts
Muscat Blanc is the Moscato used in Italy for Moscato d’Asti and Spumante, both light and fizzy wines. It also creates the Muscat d’Alsace of France, which is often made in the dry style. Muscat Blanc can also be found in the deliciously sweet wines of Beaumes-de-Venise in the south of France. The Muscat of Alexandria is responsible for the “stickies” of Australia, as well as the Muscats of Portugal and South Africa. California also has a hold on producing sweet dessert wines from Muscat.

Successful Wine Region:
France, Italy, Australia, South Africa, Portugal, United States

Common Descriptors:
grapey, musky, orange peel

Happy Moscato Day!

When I was a little kid, everyone got a glass of sparkling wine for celebrations. All the adults would get a glass of champagne, and the kids got tiny cordial glasses filled with moscato d’asti. Fast forward to today, when a liquor delivery truck covered in a giant ad for pink moscato tried to run me right off the Bay Bridge! Moscato has come a long way from those fun family occasions to mega buck in the wine business. What has happened to moscato in all this time? It’s flavored and colored and sweetened beyond what I remember. Let’s take a look at some of the traditional styles of muscat and moscato and the foods that pair with them.

Continue reading Happy Moscato Day!